March 24, 2007
The Stephen F. Austin Lumberjacks held a 7-3 lead going into the seventh inning of Saturday's game versus the Lamar Cardinals, but the Cardinals scored six runs in the final four innings to take a 9-7, 10-inning win. It was the Lumberjacks second straight loss and sends their Southland Conference record to 1-4 while Lamar remains perfect at 5-0. SFA's overall record falls to 12-14 and the Cardinals move to 18-9 overall.
After the first inning, the score was tied at two, and SFA was the first to break the tie. In the bottom of the third inning, Noel Trevino was issued a one-out walk and advanced to second when Steven Hill hit a center field base hit. Trevino scored when Jared Pitts hit a double to left center and Hill crossed the plate for the 4-2 lead on a Chris Smith ground out to shortstop.
The Cardinals cut the lead to one in the next inning on a solo home run by Jeff Vickers, but the Lumberjacks once again distanced themselves by two in their next at-bat. Zach Gardner led off the inning with a stand-up center field triple and crossed the plate on a single from Kevin Croft for the 5-3 lead.
In the fifth, the Lumberjacks took a 7-3 lead. Hill led off the inning with a walk and advanced to second when Smith put a single through the left side. Both runners scored on a double from designated hitter Jeremy Arterburn.
Lamar scored one more run in the seventh to cut the lead to 7-4 and tied the score at seven in the top of the ninth. Heath Konesheck had relieved SFA starter Lance Luetge in the middle of eighth inning and gave up three runs off three hits in an inning and a third.
The Cardinals added two more runs in the 10th for a 9-7 lead and the Lumberjacks were unable to score a run in the bottom of the extra frame, leaving a runner on first.
Luetge left the game with a 7-4 lead and did not factor in the decision. He threw 7.1 innings, giving up six hits and four runs while striking out three. Russ Fornea suffered his first loss of the season after giving up two runs off three hits. He is now 1-1 on the year for SFA.
At the plate, five Lumberjacks collected two hits: Hill, Pitts, Smith, Gardner and Croft. Hill also scored three runs. Pitts and Croft also had two stolen bases apiece.
The Lumberjacks will face Lamar in the final game of the series Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. from Jaycees Field. The game will also be broadcast on KSFA 860 AM and can be heard live online at www.ksfa860.com.