March 22, 2009
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - The SFA baseball team missed out on a sweep of Nicholls on Sunday as the Colonels scored four runs in the top of the second and did not give the lead back for a 6-3 win Sunday at Jaycees Field.
The SFA (7-13, 2-6 SLC) bullpen shut down the Nicholls (11-9, 5-4 SLC) offense until the bottom of the eighth as the Colonels scored a pair of insurance runs in the final two innings for the final margin.
The loss snaps a four-game winning streak for the `Jacks and a five-game streak over Nicholls dating back to last season. SFA finished the day just 2-for-14 with runners in scoring position and just 1-for-10 when hitting with two outs.
Freshman Brett Rogers only made it through two innings, allowing four runs in taking his second loss in as many appearances. Tyler Minto got the start for Nicholls and earned his first win of the year with five innings of work, allowing three runs with three strikeouts and a pair of walks. Reliever Ross Larson made his first appearance of the series count as he went the remaining four innings for his second save of the year, allowing just two baserunners on a pair of SFA hits.
It looked as though the `Jacks were going to take an early lead in the first inning as Zach Gardner lined the first of his two doubles on the day down the left field line, but was stranded at third when Minto got Sean Meyers to strike out and Bo Coffman to fly out to center.
The Colonels then answered with a four-run second inning that started with three straight this by Zach Tisdale, Josh Swenson and Blake Bergeron. A pair of RBI groundouts looked to have minimized the damage before leadoff hitter Chris Murrill blooped a double into left field and advanced to third on a poor throw from left field. He eventually made the score 4-0 in favor of Nicholls just one batter later on a single from Stephen Gauthe.
Travis Harrelson then entered out of the pen for SFA, throwing a pair f scoreless innings before the `Jacks were able to finally crack the scoring column in the third. Consecutive doubles from Gardner and Gabriel Garcia-Serrano put runners on second and third with nobody out and SFA was able to convert with a ground out from Tanner Hines and a sacrifice fly from Sean Meyers getting each runner home to cut the lead in half.
Jared Schrom then held the Colonels at bay from the fifth through the seventh, using a well-executed pickoff play to work out of a jam in the sixth after the `Jacks had pulled within in the fifth on an RBI infield single that scored Justin Long from third.
SFA threatened to tie the game at four apiece against Larson in the seventh when Long shot a triple into the right field corner, but the big right-hander for the Colonels struck out Garcia-Serrano swinging and got Gardner to ground out to end the inning.
The `Jacks travel next to nationally-ranked TCU on Tuesday before traveling to San Marcos for a three-game set with Texas State beginning on Friday.