EMU Baseball Wins First Night Game In Oestrike History

Updated 5/4/2000
The first night game in Oestrike Stadium history came down to the Eagles' final at bat when shortstop Nick Soliz blasted a game winning two-run homerun to give the Eagles a 9-8 victory over Michigan.

Soliz took the first pitch off Michigan pitcher Bobby Wood over the left-field fence to give the Eagles the victory and cap a historic night for the EMU baseball team.

A crowd of 1153, the largest to attend a game at Oestrike Stadium in 20 years, witnessed a night even too good by Hollywood standards. Legendary former EMU head coach Ron Oestrike was on hand to throw out the ceremonial first pitch, and Bill Clark of Quadrants Inc. turned on the lights at 6:43 pm to signal the first night game at EMU.

When EMU starting pitcher Jeff Mull's first pitch crossed home plate at 7:00 pm, the Eagles became the first Division I team to play a home game under the lights in the state of Michigan. Early on the story was the Michigan bats as they jumped out to a quick 4-1 lead after two innings. But it was in the sixth inning that the Eagle fans finally had something to cheer as EMU put up five runs, including Vince Thomas' fifth homerun of the year to take a 7-6 lead.

Michigan score a run each in the seventh and eighth innings to take a 8-7 lead heading into the bottom of the ninth. Frank Garcia led off the inning for EMU with a groundout to third and things were beginning to look blead for the Eagles. Vince Thomas who went two-for-three with three RBI and two runs scored on the night, drew a walk from UM closer Bobby Wood. Up stepped junior short-stop Nick Soliz who yanked Wood's first offering over the left field fence to give EMU the 9-8 victory.

Greg Anglin was three-for-four on the night for EMU and Dan Hyott added two hits. Soliz's homerun was his first hit of the night. Sean Harrington got the win for EMU in relief his record is now 5-3.