Bears sweep Southern Illinois with walk-off win

CONWAY — The University of Central Arkansas Bears came from behind once again Sunday and completed the sweep of the Southern Illinois Salukis, winning 13-12 in 10 innings at Bear Stadium.

The Bears got their third one-run victory of the weekend — and fourth of the season — when sophomore Kade Seldomridge of Rogers, Ark., poked a two-out base hit through the right side of the infield on a 1-2 pitch in the bottom of the 10th to score senior A.J. Mendolia.

Seldomridge had some in as a defensive replacement in the top of the ninth but ended up ending the four-hour slugfest. Mendolia led off the inning with a walk and went to third on Casey Shipley’s base hit. Jagger Schattle walked to load the bases against SIU reliever Anthony Pron before Seldomridge’s game-winner.

UCA sophomore right hander Hunter Alexander pitched the final three scoreless innings for the Bears for his first victory, allowing just two hits and striking out five and working out of a couple of jams. He got big strikeouts to end both the ninth (bases loaded) and the 10th (two on) innings.

Pron was SIU’s eighth pitcher of the day and issued seven of the 11 walks by the SIU staff. UCA was also hit by a pitch seven times, including twice each by Shipley and Mason King.

SIU out-hit UCA 17-14 but also committed four errors to UCA’s none. The Bears had won the previous two games of the series by identical 9-8 scores. The Salukis entered the weekend undefeated at 4-0. UCA got back to .500 (4-4) with the sweep.

Junior centerfielder Drew Sturgeon had a two-run home run in the first inning as UCA jumped out to an early 4-0 lead. Sturgeon, Mendolia, Shipley and Tanner Leonard all had two hits for the Bears. Sturgeon, Schattle and Zeb Allen knocked in two runs each. Bryce Cermenelli had an RBI triple in the first inning.