March 5, 2014
RUSTON, La. - Louisiana Tech (4-8) split Wednesday's doubleheader against McNeese State (8-4) with the first game of the day ending in walk-off fashion with a two-run home run by Bre'shon Kimbell for a 6-4 win at J.C. Love Field at Pat Patterson Park in Ruston.
After a spectacular finish for the Bulldogs in the day's first game, McNeese State's bats came alive for a 20-3 victory over LA Tech in the final game of the afternoon at J.C. Love Field at Pat Patterson Park.
Game 1: LA Tech 6, McNeese State 4 (11 inn.)
Louisiana Tech mounted a come-from-behind victory in thrilling fashion in the first game of Wednesday's double header against McNeese State with a walk-off 6-4 victory, but needed 11 innings to do so with the help of Kimbell's late-inning heroics.
Down 4-2 heading to the bottom of the ninth, the Bulldogs rallied and with runners on second and third, a sacrifice bunt by Thomas Simoneaux turned awry for McNeese State as pitcher Steven O'Bryant overthrew the first baseman, allowing two unearned runs to score and knot the game at 4-4.
Two innings later with two outs and Ryan Jones on first, Kimbell sent a two-run walk-off home run over the left field fence for an 11th-inning victory. It was Kimbell's second home run of the afternoon as the junior outfielder had a solo shot to left field in the sixth. It is the first time since the 2011 season that a Bulldog player has had two home runs in a game. Today's game also marks the first walk-off home run a Bulldog hitter has had since 2010.
Eric Dunbar (1-0) earned his first collegiate win for the Bulldogs after coming on in the eighth and pitching four innings of no-hit baseball with just two walks on the afternoon. Austin Greer start for Tech, pitching 3.0 innings while giving up two runs on three hits, while striking out four. Mark Baughman also pitched four innings in relief and allowed two runs off five hits.
O'Bryant (0-2) was charged with the loss for McNeese State after coming on in the seventh inning in relief of starter Cole Prejean. O'Bryant gave up four runs - two earned - off five hits, including Kimbell's game-winning home run in the final frame.
Kimbell's career day included a 3-for-5 performance at the dish with two home runs, three RBI, a walk and two runs scored. Johnson was 1-for-4 on the day with a run, while Taylor Love, Jacob Derouen, Tyler Qualls and Jones each had one hit in the win. Jones' single to left field in the 11th inning set up the game-winning home run for Kimbell.
Game 2: McNeese State 20, LA Tech 3 (7 inn.)
The Louisiana Tech pitching staff gave up 20 runs on 20 hits as the McNeese State bats were too much to handle in a 20-3 loss in a seven-inning contest.
The Bulldogs gave up 20 runs in a game for the first time since allowing UTPA to score 23 during the 2010 LA Tech campaign.
McNeese State totaled five doubles on the afternoon to add to two home runs, one of which was a grand slam for the Cowboys. McNeese batters put up at least five runs in three of the seven innings played.
LA Tech Luke Giddens (0-3) started for the Bulldogs and was charged with the loss after allowing nine runs off eight hits before being relieved with no outs in the second inning. Ben Carlisle and Paul Harris combined to give up 11 runs on 10 hits in two innings of relief work, while Braden Bristo, Jared Keating and Joshua Horton were the three Bulldog pitchers who held the Cowboys scoreless in a combined four innings of relief.
Bryce Kingsley (1-1) started for McNeese State and earned his first win of the season after holding the Bulldogs scoreless in four innings of work. Kingsley gave up just two hits in the outing. Lance Sefcik came on in the fifth and gave up two runs off three hits, before Cory Lapeze pitched a scoreless fifth. Jacob Williams pitched the final frame, allowing one run off two hits.
Andrew Guillotte and Matt Williams each led the Cowboys in the second game with three-hit days at the plate. Williams had a double and scored four runs in the game. Taylor Drake was 1-for-2 with four RBI as the first baseman had a grand slam for McNeese State in the fifth inning. Lucas Quary also knocked in three RBI for the Cowboys with a three-run home run in the game. All nine starters for McNeese State hit safely in the game.
Steven Blanchard led the Bulldogs at the plate with a three hit performance in four at bats and an RBI. Stephen Gandy knocked in the other two LA Tech runs with a 2-for-3 effort at the dish. Taylor Burch and Jordan Taylor also had one hit apiece in the loss.
Louisiana Tech will now hit the road for the first time this season as the Bulldogs travel to face Texas A&M in a three-game series beginning at 6:35 p.m. Friday in College Station.
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