A trio of Blue Raiders combined for nine hits and left-hander Zac Curtis fanned 11 in Middle Tennessee's series opening 8-1 victory over Mississippi Valley State at Reese Smith Jr. Field on Friday.
The Raiders (16-18) notched eight runs on 12 hits with one error to improve to 9-2 in the team's last 11 home games. Mississippi Valley scored a run on five hits and one error, falling to 1-26 on the season. MT opened up to a 4-0 lead before MVSU scored its lone run in the sixth. MT added two more runs in the sixth and eighth innings.
Jared Allen, Trent Miller and Jake Ingold combined for nine of MT's 12 hits. Miller went 3-for-5 with two runs, three RBI, a double and one home run. His double in the eighth was his 57th in his career, tying him for fourth all-time at Middle Tennessee. Allen hit 3-for-4 with a pair of runs, two RBI and a double. The junior Ingold recorded a 3-for-5 night with a triple and a RBI. Hank LaRue managed a double and a single, along with a team-high three runs scored in the win.
Curtis improved to 5-1 with eight innings of work. The Hendersonville native allowed one run, unearned, on five hits in eight innings pitched. He matched his career-high for the third time this season with 11 strikeouts in 121 pitches thrown. Heath Slatton closed the door the in the ninth with one strikeout.
The Raiders scored in the first when Allen doubled to center field, scoring LaRue. Miller belted a two-run homer to run field to extend the Blue Raiders' to 3-0. Later in the inning, Ingold inked his second triple of the year to score Allen.
Mississippi Valley earned its first run in the sixth when Chris McWright scored off a passed ball. The Raiders etched their second triple of the game when LaRue roped one on the right field line to score Jake Ellison. Miller's groundout to short, scored LaRue to give MT a 6-1 edge. MT's Miller and Allen scored a pair of runs in the eighth to give the Raiders a seven run advantage.
On Saturday, the Blue Raiders and Delta Devils square off at 4 p.m. on for the Legends game. RHP Paul Mittura (1-2, 3.35 ERA) takes the mound against MVSU's Blake Thomas (0-4, 8.18 ERA).
NOTES: Trent Miller hammered his third home run of the season and the 27th of his career in the fifth inning ... Jake Ingold recorded his second triple of the season, which ties him for the team lead with Jared Allen ... MT recorded two triples in a game for the first time since posting two against Louisiana on March 24, 2013 ... Trent Miller's double in the eighth was the 57th of his career, moving him to fourth all-time at Middle Tennessee ... Zac Curtis tied his career-high for the third time with 11 strikeouts ... The Raiders are 9-2 in their last 11 home games dating back to March 14.