The Saluki baseball team lost the first game of the season Friday but came back to take the final two games of its weekend series against North Florida.
SIU fell 7-4 in the first game. North Florida took a 3-0 lead after two innings, but the Salukis came back to tie with a three-run top of the fifth. In the bottom of the sixth, North Florida shortstop Paul Karmeris hit a two-run single off Saluki sophomore reliever Aaron Snyder that broke the tie and provided the game-winning runs.
SIU junior pitcher Cody Forsythe retired 13-straight batters after giving up three earned runs in the first two innings. He pitched five innings and took a no-decision, while Snyder (0-1) took the loss.
The Salukis took the second game 4-2 Saturday. SIU jumped out to a 2-0 lead by the middle of the fifth inning, but North Florida came back to tie the game in the bottom of the sixth after first baseman Michael Wesner hit a two-run home run off Saluki senior starting pitcher Cameron Maldonado.
Maldonado departed after the home-run, giving him a no-decision.
SIU answered back in the top of the seventh when Saluki sophomore right fielder Austin Montgomery hit a solo home run, followed by an RBI single from sophomore shortstop Donny Duschinsky.
Freshman relief pitcher Sam Coonrod (1-0) earned the victory after pitching two hitless innings in his Saluki debut, while sophomore reliever Todd Eaton picked up his first save of the season.
Also making his Saluki debut was junior starter Nathan Dorris, and he earned the victory in SIU’s 16-12 win against North Florida on Sunday. Dorris struck out six in 5.1 innings of work, giving up three hits and three earned runs.
SIU jumped out to a 6-0 lead in the top of the fifth, but North Florida closed the gap to 8-6 by the end of the seventh. Then the Salukis plated seven runs in the top of the eighth off of North Florida relievers Evan Incinelli and Evan Stermer.
Montgomery drove in five runs Sunday, while Saluki senior catcher Brian Bajer drove in three on a double in the eighth.
SIU will travel to play the University of Tennessee-Martin at 2 p.m. Tuesday.