Bulldogs Drop Series Finale, 3-2, at FAU
March 16, 2014
BOCA RATON, Fla. - After leading for the first seven innings of play, Louisiana Tech fell to Florida Atlantic, 3-2, after the Owls rallied for a come-from-behind victory to take the weekend series Sunday afternoon at FAU Stadium.
LA Tech (7-12, 2-4 C-USA) scored two runs in the second inning and held a 2-0 lead until the seventh when Florida Atlantic (14-7, 3-3 C-USA) scored one to cut the lead to 2-1. In the eighth, the Owls plated two runs to seal the series-deciding win.
"This was a tough one to lose, but when you only score two runs it is tough to win on a Sunday," head coach Wade Simoneaux said. "We have to be able to execute better offensively. I thought the guys played well defensively and we pitched well. It is just a matter of getting that insurance run, but that was a tough one for our guys to lose because we felt like we were in command of the game."
Kevin Alexander (2-0) earned the win for FAU after coming on in relief in the eighth, allowing just two hits and holding the Bulldogs scoreless to clinch the win. Drew Jackson started for the Owls and pitched seven innings, giving up two runs on five hits, while striking out five and walking one.
Richie Navari started for the Bulldogs and received the no decision after allowing just one run on six hits in 6.2 innings of work. Laetten Galbraith came on in the seventh and pitched the final 1.1 innings of the series. Galbraith (1-2) was charged with the loss after allowing two runs in the eighth inning on three hits, while striking out one.
Tech took an early lead in the second when Stephen Gandy reached base after being hit by a pitch and then stole second base. Gandy reached third on a wild pitch, followed by a walk for Tyler Qualls to give Tech runners on the corners. On a double steal, the Bulldogs took a 1-0 lead when Gandy beat the tag at home to reach plate safely. Qualls scored on the next play when Thomas Simoneaux singled to right field for an RBI and 2-0 Tech lead.
The score would remain 2-0 in favor of the Bulldogs before the seventh when Florida Atlantic began to chip away at Tech's lead. With two outs in the inning, the Owls began their comeback starting with a double to right center field by Mitch Morales, who then scored on an RBI single by CJ Chatham to cut Tech's lead to 2-1 after seven innings.
The damage continued in the eighth when Tyler Rocklein tripled to right field with one out to put the tying run 90 feet away. Esteban Puerta then singled through the right side to score Rocklein and knot the game at 2-2. Levi Meyer followed up with an RBI single to right field to score the go ahead run for the eventual win.
Billy Endris and Meyer each led the Owls with two hits on the day, while Meyer also drove in a run. Puerta and Chatham were both 1-for-4 with an RBI to help lead FAU to a series victory. The Owls totaled nine hits on the afternoon.
Simoneaux led with a 2-for-4 effort with an RBI, while Taylor Love also had two hits in the loss to stretch his reached base streak to 17 consecutive games. Colby Johnson, Ryan Jones and Qualls each had one hit apiece for the Bulldogs. Tech had a total of seven hits in the loss.
The Bulldogs return home to host Old Dominion in a three-game conference series beginning at 6 p.m. Friday, March 21 at J.C. Love Field at Pat Patterson Park in Ruston.
For complete coverage of Bulldog Baseball, please follow @LATechBSB on Twitter or visit the official home of Louisiana Tech Athletics at LATechSports.com.
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