March 18, 2012
BEAUMONT, Texas – Lamar scored in the bottom of the ninth to win 4-3 and prevent a UT Arlington sweep Sunday afternoon at Vincent-Beck Stadium.
The Mavericks had won the first two games of the weekend series, but came up short in the finale and returned to Arlington with a 13-8 overall record and 3-3 in the Southland Conference. Lamar is 7-12 and 1-5.
The Mavericks got off to a good start, but managed only five hits on the day. UTA returns to the diamond with Tuesday's trip across the Metroplex to face Dallas Baptist.
UTA's Brandon Lawrence, a late addition to the lineup, led off the game with a triple off the right-field wall. Ryan Walker bunted in the following at-bat and was hit in the back by Lamar starter Colin Chapman's throw to first. Lawrence scored easily for a quick 1-0 lead.
Lamar's Darian Johnson got those runs right back with a two-run homer to right in the bottom of the first.
UTA took the lead back in the third. Walker walked, stole second and advanced to third on a wild pitch. Preston Beck muscled a singled up the middle to score Walker.
The Cardinals tied it up again in the fourth on David Harris' second double of the day.
Zach Thompson came on in the sixth for Merck, who was the first UTA starter not to get into the seventh this weekend.
Thompson made way for Chase Weaver with one out in the seventh and Lamar runners at the corners. Weaver induced a ground-ball double-play to keep the game knotted 3-3 going into the eighth.
The Mavs had their chances in the eighth. Greg McCall singled to open the inning and Lawrence reached on a bunt to chase Lamar reliever Vernnon Maxwell. The Mavericks had the bases loaded with two outs and Cody Dyvig at the plate.
Dyvig got the count to 3-0, but couldn't coax a fourth ball. Cardinals reliever John Gilligan fired two strikes before getting Dyvig swinging to end the threat.
Lamar's Brad Picha doubled with one out in the ninth to get the winning run on. Two batters later, Wayne Stanley singled down the left-field line to score pinch runner Joe Arechiga.