May 1, 2011
BEAUMONT, Texas -
Lamar University's baseball team parlayed strong pitching by Albert Lott and Stephen Tromblee and clutch hitting by Cameron Campbell and Jude Vidrine Sunday afternoon into a 10-5 victory over Northwestern State University before a crowd of 776 in Vincent-Beck Stadium.
In his longest outing of the season, Lott went six-plus innings over which he limited the Demons to five hits, while striking out four batters and walking five. The 6-foot-3, 271-pounder from Port Arthur, who pitched his freshman season at Northwestern State, threw 109 pitches in earning his second win in three decisions this season.
"This outing and Lott's first of the season against the University of Akron have been his best," said Lamar coach Jim Gilligan. "With the exception of a few glimpses of his real potential in between those two, he's been kind of AOL, but he seems to be coming back at exactly the right time of the season."
The win, which put Lamar at 24-21 on the season, moved the Cardinals to 10-14 in the Southland Conference race giving them a mathematical chance of making the league's eight-team postseason tournament set for late May in San Marcos.
"We're facing an uphill battle with nine games remaining, but it's still doable," said Gilligan. "This weekend's series against McNeese State (one at home Friday night and the other two in Lake Charles on Saturday and Sunday) will definitely be critical, but I believe our team is up the challenge."
The left-handed Tromblee entered the game after Lamar's first reliever Shane Hamaker yielded a leadoff double to Demon shortstop Nick Hinojos to lead off the eighth inning with the Cardinals clinging to an 8-5 lead. He shut down the Demons on one hit and struck out two batters over the final two innings to help the Cardinals end their eight-game losing streak in conference play. In doing so, he earned his second save of the season.
"That runner (Hinorjos) advanced to third base on a groundout, then Tromblee got two huge strikeouts (of Ray Frias and Justin Martinez)," said Gilligan. "He showed what he's made of today."
Campbell, the Cardinals' designated hitter, went 2-for-3 and drove in two runs, while Vidrine poked a two-run single down the leftfield line to give the Cardinals a pair of insurance runs in the eighth inning. Campbell picked up his first RBI with a bases-loaded walk in the Cardinals' five-run third inning, and he also drove in Andrew Dewey with a two-out double in the sixth inning.
The Cardinals will resume Southland Conference play at 6:30 p.m. Friday when they open a three-game series against McNeese State in Vincent-Beck Stadium. Games 2 and 3 of the series will be played Saturday and Sunday afternoons in Lake Charles, La.