The University of Central Arkansas Bears defeated Houston Baptist, 15-4, in their opening game of the Southland Conference baseball tournament.

The Bears needed a few of those runs Friday night as the Huskies won their third straight elimination game with a 6-2 victory over UCA at Sugar Land, Texas.

Houston Baptist will play a fourth straight elimination game and will meet the Bears again in the decisive game of the bracket championship at 1 p.m. Saturday. The winner will have only a short rest before playing a hot and well-rested Sam Houston State team (the only remaining unbeaten team left) about 6 p.m. At stake will be the championship and automatic NCAA tournament berth.

Zach Carter shut down the UCA offense, scattering eight hits over eight innings. The Huskies had 11 hits, seven of them against UCA starter Cody Davenport, who yielded to Will Bland, who allowed one  run.