Bulldogs Offense on Full Display as Louisiana Tech Avoids Elimination
May 24, 2012
Mesa, Ariz. – Senior Justin Gordey’s went 4-for-4 from the plate with two runs scored and one RBI and freshman right-hander Phil Maton struck out six in 6.1 innings to lead Louisiana Tech (25-27) to a 9-6 victory over Hawai’i (30-25) in an elimination game on Thursday morning at Hohokam Stadium.
Every starter in the Bulldog batting order recorded a hit and six of those hitters has multi-hit games, led by Gordey’s career day as the center fielder went perfect from the plate in the win.
“We have to take it one pitch at a time,” said head coach Wade Simoneaux. “Our offense really sparked today. It’s nice to see our offense come alive.”
Maton improved to 8-5 on the year after allowing five runs – two earned – and striking out six in 6.1 innings. After allowing two hits and a hit by pitch to begin the game, Maton retired the next 10 hitters in order. Jamie Gilley picked up his third save of the season after striking out three in 2.2 innings as the redshirt junior entered the game ranked 10th in the nation in strikeouts per nine innings with 11.07/game. Matt Sisto (8-4) was charged with the loss after allowing five runs in two innings as the Warriors were eliminated from the Western Athletic Conference Tournament.
Catcher Kyle Arnsberg went 2-3 from the plate with two runs scored and two sacrifice bunts from the leadoff spot and shortstop Ryan Gebhardt was 1-for-3 at the dish with a double, two RBI and two sacrifice bunts. Alex Williams and Taylor Terrasas combined to go 4-for-8 with two runs scored and three RBI from the number three and four spots in the lineup. Bre’shon Kimbell and Kody Neel each went 2-for-4 while Neel picked up two RBI in his first start in right field since February 22 (at UALR).
After Hawai’i took a 1-0 lead to begin the game, the Bulldogs tied the game at 1 in the bottom of the first after Arnsberg led off the frame with a double to right-center field. The catcher moved to third base on a sacrifice bunt by Gebhardt and came around to score on an RBI single by Williams, extending his hit steak to 16 games and tying the game.
The Bulldogs took a 4-1 lead in the second inning after recording four consecutive singles with one out in the frame by Austin Hedges, Stephen Gandy, Gordey and Arnsberg. Gandy’s single advanced Hedges to third to give Tech runners in scoring position with the game tied at 1. Gordey then singled to left field, plating both runners to take a 3-1 lead, on an RBI single and a fielding error by the Warriors’ left fielder. With Gordey on second base, Arnsberg bunted for a base hit advancing Gordey to third before the center fielder came around to score Tech’s third run in the inning on Gebhardt’s RBI sacrifice.
Terrasas led off the third inning with a single before reaching third base on a double by Kimbell. Neel singled in Terrasas as Tech took a 5-1 lead going into the middle innings.
In the bottom of the fourth, the Bulldogs added three runs to take an 8-1 advantage over Hawai’i as Gordey led off the frame with a single up the middle and moved to third base on a sacrifice bunt by Arnsberg. Gebhardt then doubled to right-center field to drive in Gordey and move Arnsberg to third base. Terrasas plated both runners on a two-run single up the middle as LA Tech took a seven-run lead in the fourth.
The Warriors added a run in the sixth and three in the seventh to cut Tech’s lead to 8-5 before Tech added a run in the bottom of the seventh. After left-hander Scott Squier entered the game for Hawai’i, Williams doubled to lead off the frame and Neel singled up the middle with two outs to give Tech a 9-5 lead.
Hawai’i added a run in the eighth as they trailed by three runs but Gilley shut the door on the Warriors as Hawai’i became the first team eliminated from the WAC Tournament.
Tech heads to another elimination game tomorrow as the Bulldogs face the lowest seed from the four teams playing later on Thursday at 1 p.m. CT on Friday. Should Tech win its morning game, the Bulldogs continue play at 5 p.m. CT looking to rally back from a first round loss.
The voice of the Bulldogs Dave Nitz will call the action on the LA Tech Sports Network beginning with the pregame show at 12:45 p.m. CT.
Fans can follow all games live via Game Tracker and follow @LATechKQueliz and @LATechBSB for in-game updates.
For complete coverage of Bulldog Baseball, please visit the official home of Louisiana Tech Athletics at LATechSports.com.