Bulldogs Lose Ninth-Inning Heartbreaker 7-6 to UT Arlington
Feb. 15, 2013
RUSTON - The Louisiana Tech Bulldog baseball team (0-1, 0-0) led by as many as five runs before UT Arlington (1-0, 0-0) rallied to score six runs in the final four innings and defeated Tech 7-6 Saturday night at Clay Gould Ballpark in Arlington, Texas.
Mavericks left fielder Derek Miller singled to right-center field with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning to bring home Darien McLemore as the winning run and earn the one-run victory in the season opener.
The Bulldogs led 6-1 going into the bottom of the sixth inning before the Mavericks scored six unanswered runs, with two runs scored in the bottom of the sixth, seventh and ninth innings to complete the come-from-behind victory.
Phil Maton started on the mound for Tech, holding UT Arlington to five hits and one run with three strikeouts in 5.0 innings pitched. James Ferguson came on in relief in the sixth inning and allowed a lead-off double before a pair of errors by center fielder Taylor Burch would plate one run for the Mavericks. UT Arlington would add one more run to cut Tech's lead to three as the Bulldogs led 6-3 after six innings.
The Mavericks would pick back up in the seventh with two additional runs after two singles and a triple before senior Jamie Gilley came on to strike out two UT Arlington batters to close out the inning.
UT Arlington would continue the comeback in the eighth when a leadoff double by Miller forced the fourth Bulldog pitching change of the night as left hander Sam Alvis came on in relief of Gilley with no outs. Alvis would get out of the bind with a strike out and ground out to second to keep the Bulldogs lead at 6-5.
Alvis would start the bottom of the ninth inning with a hit batter and a single to right field before head coach Wade Simoneaux would bring in closer Caleb Dudley to preserve the win. Pinch hitter McLemore would reach on a fielder's choice and score J.M. Twichell from third to tie the game at six. With runners on first and second, Miller singled to right field to score McLemore to complete the walk-off victory for the Mavericks.
The Bulldogs used four different pitchers in relief with closer Dudley, receiving the loss after allowing the tying and winning run in the bottom half of the ninth inning.
"I thought our guys competed well," Simoneaux said. "We faced two good arms tonight and let a 6-1 lead slip away from us. They had some breaks and we created some of those breaks for them, but we have to handle the ball better. I thought Phil (Maton) had an outstanding outing. For the most part, I thought all of our guys on the mound did a good job. They have a good ball club and they came back and got us."
John Beck started for the Mavericks, pitching 5.0 innings while giving up five runs on three hits before being relieved by Chad Nack, who earned the win after holding the Bulldogs to just one run on four hits in the final four innings of the game.
"(Trevor) Petersen will start tomorrow and we have to come back and try to even the series up and try to win it on Sunday. I think Petersen is going to give us a good chance to win
Tech returns to the diamond at 2 p.m. Saturday in game 2 of the series with the Mavericks at Clay Gould Ballpark in Arlington, Texas.
For complete coverage of LA Tech baseball, follow @LATechBSB on Twitter or visit the official home of Louisiana Tech athletics at www.LATechSports.com.
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