March 12, 2010
ARLINGTON, Texas - UT Arlington's Jason Mitchell led the Mavericks to a 9-6 victory over Sam Houston State in both teams Southland Conference opener on Friday evening at Clay Gould Ballpark.
Mitchell allowed six runs - all unearned - and the Mavericks (5-8, 1-0 SLC) committed five errors in the first three innings but also scored six in the first inning in a wild start to the conference season by both teams. Following the first three innings, the Mavericks and Bearkats combined for 13 runs, 11 hits and seven errors.
"I'm proud of Jason, he threw really well," UT Arlington head coach Darin Thomas said. "That is what a Friday-night guy does, he was up against their best pitcher and I thought he pitched really well. We didn't play well behind him, which is evident by giving up zero earned runs. We couldn't have asked any more from him and Logan did a great job out of the bullpen as well."
Mitchell battled through the early innings and finished with his second win of the season. He threw 128 pitches in 7.0 innings while allowing nine hits and zero earned runs with nine strikeouts and two walks. Mitchell is now 2-1 this season with a 1.33 ERA and has struck out 37 batters in 27.0 innings pitched.
Junior Logan Bawcom pitched a scoreless eighth and ninth innings to earn his second save of the season while recording four strikeouts and allowing two base hits.
Sam Houston State starting pitcher Dallas Gallant fell to 0-3 on the season after pitching 6.0 innings and allowing nine runs (eight earned) on nine hits with five walks and three strikeouts.
Once the errors stopped for the Mavericks, Mitchell coasted through the fourth, fifth and sixth innings allowing only two base runners and tallying four strikeouts, which includes striking out the side in the fifth frame.
"That is when I felt like I got into a groove," Mitchell said of the middle innings after the Mavericks defense committed five errors. "The momentum really picked up for us, we were playing well again, we had the lead and everything just seemed to start clicking for us and we all settled in."
After UT Arlington tacked on a run in the second inning on another RBI hit by Guest, the Mavericks picked up a pair of insurance runs in the sixth inning off Brian Nephew's first career home run and with a sacrifice fly to center field by Michael Choice, which scored Nick Orr.
Orr went 2-for-3 and led all players scoring three runs. Guest extended his career-high hit streak to 14 games going 2-for-4 with a run scored and two RBI. Choice has now reached base safely in 25 consecutive games dating back to last season after going 0-for-1 with a run scored and an RBI with two walks on Friday night.
For the Bearkats, junior designated hitter Chris Andreas hit his first career home run with a three-run blast to left field in the first inning to give Sam Houston State a 3-0 lead. Sam Houston State also collected RBI from Braeden Riley with an RBI single to center field in the second and with Jessie Plumlee's two-run single to center field in the third.
The Mavericks and Bearkats' Southland Conference series continues with a 2 p.m. first pitch on Saturday and with the series finale set for 1 p.m. on Sunday. UT Arlington is scheduled to start right-handed pitcher Rett Varner (1-1) while the Bearkats are expected to start right-handed pitcher Paul Spinn (0-2) in game two of the series Saturday.
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