ST. JOSEPH, Mo. -- In a battle between St. Cloud State, the nation's top pitching team, and Missouri Western State, the nation's top hitting team, hitting prevailed as the No. 11 Griffons defeated the No. 4 Huskies 5-3 on Monday. The Griffons had nine hits, improving to 31-5 on the season.

The Griffons used four pitchers in the victory with starter Mark Spreckels going 3.2 innings giving up six hits and two earned runs. He gave up his first run in the second inning when Michael Jurgella doubled to right center and scored on a Travis Enger single to right center giving St. Cloud a 1-0 lead.

The Griffons answered in the bottom of the second with five hits and four runs. MWSU got four two out hits, which included a two-RBI single, scoring Michael Schulze and Shawn Egge. The Griffons took a 4-1 lead after two.

The Huskies scored their second run in the third when Jurgella doubled down the right field line scoring Garrett Fischer. St. Cloud State cut the lead to 4-3 in the fifth when Brian Hansen homered to right field off Mason Queen. Queen pitched well, going four innings while giving up four hits and one earned run. He got the victory for the Griffons, improving to 1-0 on the season.

MWSU answered in the bottom of the fifth when Nate Ramler tripled to right center and scored on a passed ball, giving Missouri Western a 5-3 lead after five.

The Griffons got out of a bases loaded jam in the top of the eighth as Jerad Hawkins came in and struck out Fischer, ending the threat. Logan Hollingsworth picked up his ninth save of the season, going one inning with one strikeout and one walk.

The Huskies fell to 22-4 on the season as they pounded out 10 hits. Jurgella went 3-for-5 while Fischer went 2-for-5. Scott Lieser fell to 7-2, going seven innings. He gave up nine hits and five earned runs while striking out three.

The Griffons had nine hits with Schulze, Ramler and Egge each getting two.