Christian Draper drove home Game 1’s only run in the seventh inning as the Eagles split a double-header with NAIA Missouri Valley College Saturday afternoon on the second day of the annual Russ-Matt Invitational in Winter Haven, Florida.

Game 1: Eagles 1, Vikings 0

With Michael Cohick on second in the top of the inning, Draper singled into center field. Cohick, running for David Hall, rounded third and beat the throw to the plate for the game-winning run. Hall doubled with one out to set up Draper, who came through when it counted most.

Nick Mackedon (W) then struck out the side in a scoreless bottom half of the seventh to earn the win. Mackedon finished with a line that reads 2 IP, H, 0 R, BB, HP, 3 K while facing only eight batters. He entered in the sixth inning of a scoreless tie after Jon Shiver started. Shiver (ND) pitched five innings, allowing only two hits while walking three and fanning seven in his best outing of the season.

Missouri Valley had two base runners on simultaneously in only two of the seven innings.

A.J. Alexio, Matt Carter, and Bryan Lopez also hit safely for the Eagles.

Game 2: Vikings 4, Eagles 0

Missouri Valley scored two runs in each of the fifth and sixth innings to earn the double-header split. Manny Becerra drove home two runs with a single in the fifth, and the Vikings got a solo home run from Bryan Gomez and a sacrifice fly from Austin Hulbert in the sixth. Trey Ramirez went the distance for the complete-game victory.

Cohick had a solid outing. He allowed two earned runs on eight hits in five innings. He struck out five Vikings and walked none. He was efficient with only 65 pitches. Trinity got hits from Hall, Draper, and Kelvin George.

The Eagles will continue play in the Russ-Matt Invitational on Friday, March 9. Trinity will play one game with Grace Bible College Friday at 7:15 p.m. EDT. The Eagles then have games with two separate opponents on Saturday: Aquinas College at 9:00 a.m. and Trinity Christian College at 1:00 p.m.

–Raymond Bureau, TBC