BAYLOR EARNS SERIES SPLIT BY HOLDING OFF MAVERICKS' COMEBACK
April 15, 2009
WACO, Texas - UT Arlington scored seven of the game's final 10 runs but it wasn't enough as No. 7 Baylor earned a series split by holding off the Mavericks' comeback with a 10-7 victory on Wednesday night at Baylor Ballpark in Waco. Junior left-handed pitcher Brian Watson led the Mavericks (19-17) during their comeback while holding Baylor (24-11) scoreless during three of his four innings in relief.
Junior designated hitter Dustin Dickerson jumped started Baylor hitting a two-run home run in the first and a three-run homer in the second to ignite the Bears to a 7-0 lead after two innings.
The contest was won at the plate as both teams combined for 27 base hits with nine pitchers making an appearance in the game.
UT Arlington reached the scoreboard in the third inning with three runs on four hits, including senior Justin McPherson's first career home run with a solo shot to left field leading off the inning. The Mavericks also plated runs in the third on a sacrifice fly by Matt Otteman and an RBI single through the left side from Andrew Kainer.
It wasn't until Watson entered in the fifth inning - with the Mavs trailing 8-3 - that UT Arlington was able to stop the Bears' offensive charge. Watson pitched two perfect innings in the fifth and sixth before yielding a lead-off single in the seventh, and then retiring the next three batters in order.
In fact, Watson retired 11-of-12 Baylor batters before issuing a walk and home run on back-to-back hitters in the bottom of the eighth inning.
Watson pitched a career-high four innings and tallied a career best five strikeouts. Watson was the third and final pitcher for the Mavericks as Mark Picca started the game and was relieved by Matt Dunn in the bottom of the third inning. Picca was the losing pitcher allowing seven runs on eight base hits.
While Watson held down the Bears' hitters, the Mavericks scored a run in the sixth, two in the seventh and one in the eighth to come within a run of tying the score in the top of the eighth.
Michael Choice singled through the left side in the eighth inning with one out before advancing to third base on a double to right-center field by Matt Otteman with the Mavericks trailing 8-6. Kainer grounded out to shortstop - scoring Choice - for the second out of the inning before Baylor escaped with the one-run lead on a strikeout to Mavs' pinch hitter Preston McCoy.
Four Mavericks led the way offensively with multi-hit games, as UT Arlington finished with 13 base hits. Kainer extended his career-high hit streak to 23 games - three games shy of the school record - while going 2-for-5 with two RBI. Otteman notched his team-leading 20th multi-hit game going 3-for-4, McPherson posted two hits (2-for-5) and catcher Chad Price went 2-for-4 with a run and RBI.
Dickerson went 3-for-5 with three runs scored and five RBI to lead the way for the Bears. Reed Woytek was the winning pitcher throwing 2.1 innings in relief with two strikeouts and reliever Logan Verrett notched his second save of the season with two strikeouts in the ninth inning.
UT Arlington will be back in Southland Conference action this weekend traveling to Central Arkansas for a three-game series in Conway, Ark. The series begins on Friday, April 17 at 7 p.m. and continues Saturday (2 p.m.) and Sunday (1 p.m.) at Bears Stadium.