Ricardo Sanchez had two hits and a home run in SFA's 3-1 win over Texas Southern.
April 23, 2013
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - Ricardo Sanchez had a pair of hits, including a solo home run and five Stephen F. Austin pitchers combined to hold Texas Southern to just one run in a 3-1 win over the Tigers on Tuesday at Jaycees Field.
Both teams managed just six hits apiece in the first of two games between the teams, the next coming on Wednesday afternoon in Houston. Garrett Powell moved to 2-1 on the year with the win for SFA (22-18), part of a four-man relief effort that allowed just two infield hits in six innings of work with six of SFA's 10 strikeouts. Stopper Brett Higginbotham struck the side in a shutout ninth inning to earn his sixth save of the year.
Jamell Blue fell to 0-1 with the loss, allowing the go-ahead run on a RBI double from Michael Ruiz in the bottom of the fourth after Hunter Dozier had tied the game at 1-1 with an RBI double of his own in the bottom of the third off of TSU (17-20) reliever Frank Cruz IV.
Sebastian Stargell slapped an RBI single up the middle in the top of the third to put the Tigers up 1-0, off of SFA starter Cody Priest, who struck out four in three innings of work. But Dozier answered in the bottom half of the inning with a first-pitch RBI double to the right-center field gap to knot the score and tie his single-season doubles record with the 22nd two-bagger of the season.
One inning later Ruiz put SFA up 2-1 with a RBI double off the right-field wall, just missing his first career home run and scoring Sanchez from third after he had led off the inning with a single.
Meanwhile, Powell tossed three innings in relief of Priest, keeping the Tigers off the board before being removed himself after the sixth. TSU put together a threat in the top of the seventh, loading the bases with two outs on three straight walks before reliever Cass Ingvardsen got TSU leading hitter Ellis Stephany to ground out to quell the rally.
SFA left the bases loaded itself in the bottom of the seventh, but got an insurance run in the top of the eighth when Sanchez blasted his third homer of the year over the center field fence to start the inning.
Higginbotham then came on in the ninth, striking out the side while allowing just one in field hit to earn the save.
SFA will go for the midweek sweep of the Tigers on Wednesday afternoon in Houston with freshman Matt Mundkowsky scheduled to get the start. The game will be played at the MLB Urban Development Field at Sylvester Park.