May 23, 2013
SLC Tournament Notes (Day Two)
SUGAR LAND - Southeastern Louisiana showed off some late inning heroics on Wednesday night, but the Lamar baseball team was unable to match it in the top of the ninth, scoring just once en route to a 5-3 loss in the opening round of the Southland Tournament at Constellation Field.
The game, which featured a rain delay that lasted over an hour and a half, turned into a pitcher's duel as Hunter Perry of Lamar and Kyle Cedotal of SLU continued to trade scoreless frames before the Lions ultimately broke through for three scores in the eighth, ultimately sending Lamar into an elimination game against McNeese State at noon on Thursday.
"This was a great ball game tonight, but they just opened it up a bit there in the eighth," head coach Jim Gilligan said. "These are the type of games that are hard to come back from if you take it to the room with you, so I'm going to tell them to go to sleep. That's the great thing about baseball. You get a chance to come back and play the next day. We have to shrug it off."
Perry, who relieved LU starter Jonathan Dziedzic following the delay, allowed one score in the third before settling in over the ensuing four frames. However, the eighth was not as kind as a lead-off double by Aaron Haag chased the junior from the mound.
Jerin Spikes came on in relief and surrendered a walk to Ladd Rhodes, and a single by Josh Watkins broke the deadlock. Alex Marse followed up moments later with a single to right that brought two more home to hand SLU the 5-2 lead.
Zach Luevanos earned a lead-off a walk in the ninth, and Joe Arechiga came on as a pinch runner as the Cards attempted to start a rally. A wild pitch and Aaron Olivas groundout put the sophomore in scoring position before Darian Johnson singled up the middle to cut the deficit to two. However, that proved to be all LU could muster as Picha flew out to center to end the game.
Johnson reached base three times on Wednesday night, going 1-for-3 with a pair of walks.
Perry was pegged with the hard luck loss, falling to 0-1 on the year, and Cedotal picked up the win, improving to 5-5
Perry's final stat line for the night was 5.1 innings pitched, giving up two runs on five hits and striking out two.
Lamar drew first blood in the ball game. Aaron Olivas singled up the middle, and Dornak followed suit two batters later to put LU up 1-0 after the first.
However, the Lions rallied in the second, loading the bases on a single, a walk and an error before Dziedzic could record an out. The junior southpaw later walked in the equalizer, but he struck out the ensuing batter and induced a groundout to get out of the frame.
Following SLU's go-ahead score in the third, Garret Autrey tripled to right field and scored on a Jude Vidrine single to even things up again.
Vidrine was the only Card to pick up multiple hits, going 2-for-4. As a team, the Cards were out-hit 9-8.
McNeese's Bryce Kingsley and LU's Will Hibbs are set to battle in Thursday's elimination game, which is slated to begin after the 9 a.m. meeting between Stephen F. Austin and Central Arkansas. Earlier on Wednesday, eighth-seeded McNeese fell 8-3 to top-seeded Sam Houston State.