May 21, 2014
CONWAY, Ark. - The Lamar baseball team racked up 14 hits on Wednesday, but the Cardinals were unable to string the hits together at the right times as they fell 10-4 to top-seeded Sam Houston State in each team's first game of the Southland Tournament at Bear Stadium on the campus of the University of Central Arkansas.
SHSU, which entered the game ranked as high as No. 22 in the national polls, improved to 41-15 on the year and will take on Southeastern Louisiana at 4 p.m. on Thursday. The Cards fell to 31-24 and are set to return to action at 9 a.m. against Northwestern State in the tournament's first elimination game.
It was going well early for the Cards as they led off the game with three consecutive hits, the last of which was a run-scoring single by Sam Bumpers. Kyle Markum recorded a sacrifice fly for the second run, and Tyler West, who was making just his fifth career start, followed up with another single to make it 3-0.
Bumpers and West combined to go 7-for-10 in the game, and both Markum and Seeley put up two-hit outings.
Chase Angelle, who was impressive in his previous start vs. the Bearkats, looked impressive early, tossing just 24 pitches over the first three innings, but it would all change in the fourth as SHSU.
It all started as a fielding error and a single just beyond the reach of LU second baseman Mason Salazar put two runners on to start the frame. A Ryan O'Hearn single and bases-loaded hit-by-pitch scored the first two runs, and Ryan Farney singled up the middle to put the Bearkats ahead. Two more singles brought another home and chased Angelle from the mound.
took over on the mound and surrendered a double to Anthony Azar to make it 7-3.
"You can't make mistakes against a team like Sam Houston," head coach Jim Gilligan said. "We had some chances to pile on the runs early, and then we had a few chances to get out of that fourth. We couldn't make the plays, so this goes down as a true team loss. We'll get back at it tomorrow, and we'll get to see who plays best at 9 a.m."
Angelle finished the day with 3.2 innings pitched and was pegged for seven runs (three earned) on seven hits and a walk. He fell to 4-7 on the year.
The Cards would have their chances throughout the game, but aside from a consolation score in the fifth, they weren't able to cash in, stranding 13 runners on base. SHSU plated all but six of their runners in the game.
LU will now look to repeat the heroics of last year's tournament winners, Central Arkansas. The Bears fell in their first game of the tournament last season and fought off five consecutive elimination games to claim the crown and advance to the NCAA Starkville Regional.
First pitch vs. Northwestern State on Thursday is set for 9 a.m.