April 20, 2010
HOUSTON, Texas - After surrendering a six-run lead in the sixth inning, the Lumberjack baseball team exploded for 11 unanswered runs to run away with a 17-7 midweek win over Houston Baptist on Tuesday at Husky Field.
The `Jacks managed to get 19 players in the game, spreading out 19 hits on the afternoon and led by Riley Huble and Garrett Smith who each finished with three hits on the day. Ryan Priest had a pair of hits as well, including a grand slam in a six-run seventh inning for SFA (24-11) who has won eight of its last 10 games overall.
Robbie Buller went 2-for-5 with three RBI to lead the Huskies (15-19), who still have yet to register a win over the Lumberjacks since the SFA program was reinstated.
Brett Rogers allowed five runs - one earned - in 4.1 innings, but it was Zack Taylor that ran his record to 2-0 with the win as he tossed 1.2 innings of relief.
Matt Warren took the loss for the Huskies, allowing three runs in 2.2 innings of relief.
Consecutive singles to lead off the game by Smith and Jordan Lewis set up the first SFA run of the day as a double-play ball from Jarid Scarafiotti plated Smith from third for an early 1-0 lead. One inning later SFA put runners on first and third again and Michael Haynes made it 2-0 with a short sacrifice fly that scored Darren Crabtree.
Rogers set down the first six Huskies that he faced and was rewarded with even more of a cushion as the offense strung together four consecutive hits in the top of the third to chase Reese from the mound for HBU. Bobby Loveless and Priest got the rally going with back-to-back, one-out singles before Bo Coffman lined a double down the first-base line that got a run in. Crabtree followed that hit with a two-run single of his own to give Rogers a comfortable 5-0 lead. Haynes made sure the `Jacks were not quite done as two batters later he doubled off of reliever Matt Warren to score Crabtree and cap the four-run frame.
It stayed that way until the bottom of the fifth when the Lumberjacks committed a pair of errors that led to five unearned runs and helped the Huskies tie the ballgame. Zeke Zikeli delivered the first big hit of the inning with a two-run single with one out that cut the lead to 6-3, chasing Rogers for the game for SFA. Zack Taylor then entered the game and gave up a first-pitch double to Buller that scored a pair of runs to make it 6-5. A walk and a wild pitch followed, setting up a routine ground ball from Kolby Arnst that was enough to even things at six runs apiece.
Fortunately for SFA it only took until its next at-bat to regain the lead as Huble, Haynes and Smith opened up the sixth inning with three straight hits, including Smith's RBI single that gave SFA a 7-6 lead. Lewis got another run home one batter later with a ground out and Scarafiotti pushed one more home with an RBI single that scored Smith from second, putting SFA out in front by a 9-6 margin. Coffman then picked up his third RBI of the day when he singled to score Scarafiotti and give SFA its second four-run inning of the day.
An inning later the `Jacks broke it wide open in a hurry, sending 11 hitters to the plate and pushing six runs across after a Husky error extended the inning. Priest delivered the biggest blow of them all with his team-leading seventh home run, a grand slam off of Stephen Nikonchik with one out that pushed SFA's lead to 10 runs at 16-6.
Patrick Gratzke added a sacrifice fly in the eighth for the `Jacks while Buller picked up his third RBI of the night with a single in the ninth off of Cody Priest.
SFA next takes on McNeese State in a three-game series in Nacogdoches beginning Friday at Jaycees Field.