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Gray's Friday night gem lifts Wonder Boys to 7-2 win at No. 22 Southern Arkansas


MAGNOLIA — Arkansas Tech junior pitcher John Gray pitched into the ninth inning on Friday night and registered his fifth win of the season as he shut down the potent Southern Arkansas lineup to help give the Wonder Boys the win in the series-opener.
Gray's final stat line had him with 8.1 innings pitched with two runs on three hits allowed, three walks and five strikeouts. The only blemishes against Gray came in the second and ninth innings when the Muleriders scored their runs. In the second inning, it was a solo home run off Gray while the run in the ninth came on a one-out double.
With Gray dealing, his offense began to back his effort in full force in the top of the third inning when they scored twice to give Tech a 2-1 lead. In that inning, Markos Cabranes led off with a walk and was followed by a hit-by-pitch taken by Grant Jones. Both Cabranes and Jones were moved up 90-feet in the next at-bat as Logan Schwenke laid down a successful sacrifice bunt.
Nick Jones then delivered the big hit as he singled up the middle to drive in Cabranes and N. Jones.

In the fifth, the Wonder Boys added two more runs and chased SAU starter Jeremy Adorno from the start. Before exiting the game, however, Adorno was responsible for the two runners that scored as N. Jones led off with a double down the right field line while Christian Olea singled to center to move N. Jones to third. Adorno then loaded the bases by hitting Keaton Ranallo with a pitch, prompting the change.
After an out was made and the bases still loaded, Shane Poe came through with the big knock as he singled up the middle to score N. Jones and Olea.
The Wonder Boys would go on to add three more runs of insurance before the ninth inning with a run in the seventh and two in the eighth. The run in the seventh was a solo home run by Ranallo while the two runs in the eighth as N. Jones mirrored his two-RBI single from the third inning.
Tech and SAU will now prepare to conclude their weekend series on Saturday afternoon with a doubleheader starting at 2 p.m.