WKU Baseball Reliever Ben Morrison Makes Return to Mound

A nine-run sixth inning for visiting Charlotte was the difference Friday night, as WKU Baseball lost by a score of 16-5 at Nick Denes Field. Thomas Peter and Kevin Lambert knocks three hits apiece, while Hunter Wood added a pair of his own.

Paul Kirkpatrick started for the Hilltoppers and allowed five runs in the first two innings before finding a groove similar to his complete-game effort at UTSA six days ago. After the first three 49ers reached base in the second inning, Kirkpatrick retired 12 of the next 13 batters through the fifth frame, allowing only a hit by pitch.

Although WKU fell behind 5-0 early, the home squad fought back to make it a 5-2 game in the bottom of the second when Colie Currie grounded home Tyler Robertson and Peter doubled in Lambert. But Charlotte reached base with its first eight batters in the sixth off Kirkpatrick, Devon Loomis and Michael Hicks, plating nine to take a 14-2 lead.

Topper Notes
Ben Morrison made his 2017 debut in the eighth inning, officially making his return from Tommy John surgery. The righty from Bowling Green allowed a pair of singles, but finished the frame unscathed with two pop outs and a fly ball to Colie Currie for the third out. In all, Morrison threw 18 pitches, 12 of which for strikes.
Ty Hogan, a career catcher for the Hilltoppers, made his debut on the mound in the ninth inning. Although Hogan had been working bullpens for the last month, he had previously never toed the rubber. Although the inning started out with a triple and single by the 49ers, Hogan forced a 4-6-3 double play off the bat of Conference USA leading hitter T.J. Nichting and a fly out to Wyatt Featherston for no further damage.
Cody Cooper made his fifth appearance behind the plate, entering the game for Hunter Wood to begin the seventh inning. In the ninth inning, he got into the batter’s box for the fifth time this season and hit a line-drive single into center field for his first career hit at WKU. In all, the Hilltoppers racked up 12 hits by seven different players on the evening.
What’s Up Next
WKU hopes to avoid a series sweep Saturday, April 15 against the 49ers, with first pitch at 12 p.m. at Nick Denes Field. Charlotte will throw righty Zach Flanagan, while the Hilltoppers’ final starter remains TBA at this time.

How to Follow the Hilltoppers: For complete information on WKU Hilltopper Baseball, follow the program via social media @WKUBaseball on Snapchat, Twitter, Instagram & Facebook.

Bryan Fyalkowski
Assistant Director of Media Relations
WKU Hilltopper Athletics

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