May 17, 2012
SAN ANTONIO - Jeff Abt and Seth Dornak each homered Thursday evening at Roadrunner Field as Lamar University kept its hopes of qualifying for the Southland Conference Tournament alive with a 9-4 baseball victory over UTSA.
Lamar, now 21-29 overall and 13-18 in league play, will need to sweep the three-game series to have a chance at one of the eight spots in next week's Southland Conference Tournament. The Cardinals will also need help from at least one other team.
The two teams will continue the series Friday evening at 6 p.m. before closing the regular season Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m.
In addition to the 14-hit barrage put on by the Lamar offense, junior left hander Jonathan Dziedzic pitched 8.2 innings to improve his record to 5-4 on the season. Dziedzic scattered seven hits with nine strikeouts and only two walks before giving way to Eric Harrington with two runners on in the ninth.
After giving up a single to the first batter he faced, Harrington got right fielder John Welborn to fly out to Garret Autrey in center field to end the game. Only two of UTSA's four runs were earned as Dziedzic lowered his earned run average to 3.47.
Lamar broke through for three runs in the third inning. V.J. Bunner led off with a double, but UTSA starter Casey Selsor got the next two Cardinals out before running in to trouble. Dornak mashed his third home run of the year over the left field fence to stake the Cards to a 2-0.
Abt, who finished 1-for-3 and reached base for the 25th straight game, then drew a two-out walk to keep the inning alive. First baseman Brad Picha came through with a double to left center to score Abt and make it a 3-0 game.
The Cardinals added single runs in the fourth and fifth innings before breaking through for four runs in the sixth. Autrey enjoyed a three-hit day for the Cardinals and scored his only run of the game in the fourth on a single to third by shortstop Aaron Olivas
Lamar's fifth run also came with two outs as Picha was hit by a pitch to keep the fifth inning alive and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Darian Johnson, who joined Autrey with a three-hit day, singled to center to score Picha and put the Cards on top 5-0.
The Roadrunners (21-31 overall, 10-20 in the Southland) finally got on the board in the fifth inning with a pair of unearned runs. Center fielder Daniel Rockett reached on an error by Johnson at third and scored on a single to right by shortstop R.J. Perucki. Perucki would then score on a throwing error by Olivas at short.
UTSA's momentum was short lived as the Cardinals built on their lead in the sixth inning. Catcher Tommy Henk led off with a single and moved to second on a walk to Bunner. Olivas then reached on a bunt single and all three players moved up on a throwing error by Selsor.
Dornak drove in his third run of the game with a sacrifice fly to center field that scored Bunner. Abt then followed with his second home run of the season to chase Selsor from the game with the Cardinals leading 9-2.
Selsor would take the loss to fall to 4-8 on the season after allowing all nine runs on 11 hits in 5.2 innings. Clint Sharp would work the final 3.1 innings, allowing just three hits.
The Roadrunners scored their final two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning as third baseman Ryan Dalton blasted his eighth home run of the season with a runner on.