May 15, 2014
TULSA, Okla. – Lamar and Oral Roberts are fighting for their Southland Baseball Tournament lives this weekend, and the Golden Eagles fired the opening salvo on Thursday night, picking up a 12th-inning 6-5 victory over the Cardinals at J.L. Johnson Stadium.
This weekend’s match-up with Oral Roberts is a virtual play-in series for next week’s Southland Tournament in Conway, Ark. With the loss, the Cards dropped to 29-23 on the year and now sit in ninth in the league standings with a 14-14 record, one game behind Oral Roberts and Central Arkansas for the final spot in the tournament. UCA, who earned a 14-0 win on Thursday, is playing last place New Orleans this weekend, a team that has earned just two conference wins in 28 games this season.
It was a dramatic night in Tulsa on Thursday as the final three scheduled innings turned into an all-out battle between the Cards and Eagles. LU pushed two runs across prior to the seventh-inning stretch to tie the game up at 3-3, and a run in the top of the eighth gave the visitors the slim advantage before ORU countered with two runs in bottom half of the frame to put themselves three outs from victory.
However, a Jude Vidrine single brought things even once more, but the game appeared very much in doubt after ORU loaded the bases in the bottom of the ninth without registering a single out. Andrew Beasley heeded the call out of the bullpen for the Red and White, and promptly struck out the ensuing two hitters before inducing a groundout to send the game into extra innings.
ORU (30-24, 15-14 Southland) eventually broke through in the 12th as Emmanuel Forcier led off the frame with a walk. A J.T. Autrey wild pitch and a sacrifice bunt would put him 90 feet from home. Aiming for an inning-ending double play, three-hole hitter Jose Trevino was walked intentionally. Unfortunately for LU, he would go on to steal second, which led to another intentional walk, this time clean-up hitter Tyler Boss. Matt Brandy was hit by an errant pitch moments later to bring home the deciding score.
, who gave up the walk to start the 12th
, was credited with the loss, falling to 0-1 on the season.
In all, seven LU pitchers saw the mound on Thursday, beginning with Chase Angelle, who has been the Cards’ most consistent arm on the mound this season. The lefty out of Orange tossed the game’s opening 5.2 innings, giving up three runs (two earned) on five hits and a pair of walks. Both Lance Warren and Hunter Perry would surrender runs in his stead, and Beasley would end his impressive relief effort with three scoreless innings, giving up just two hits and striking out four.
Offensively, the Cards were led by a pair of local products as Nederland native Vidrine went 2-for-4 with a score and a run batted in, and Brandon Provost, a graduate of Port Neches-Groves High School, was 3-for-6 with a pair of RBI. However, the rest of the line-up combined for just two hits, and ORU held an 11-7 edge in the category.
The two sides will return to action Friday at J.L. Johnson Stadium. A loss for the Cards paired with a win by UCA would eliminate LU from contention for the Southland Tournament. David Carver will get the nod on the mound, and first pitch is scheduled for 6:30 p.m.