April 26, 2009
NACOGDOCHES, Texas - Two wild pitches in the 10th inning doomed UT Arlington in a 4-3 loss to Stephen F. Austin as the Lumberjacks completed a three-game Southland Conference series sweep over the Mavericks at Jaycees Field in Nacogdoches, Texas.
UT Arlington drops to 23-20 overall and to 14-10 in SLC play while SFA improves to 19-23 overall and to 10-13 in the SLC.
The Mavericks tied the score 3-3 in the eighth inning, scoring a pair of runs on a groundout RBI by Jeff Storms and an infield single by Justin McPherson. After neither team could plate a run in the ninth, UT Arlington went down in order during the top of the 10th inning while SFA pushed across the winning run in the bottom half.
The Lumberjacks started the 10th inning with one out after UT Arlington reliever Brian Watson struck out nine-hole batter Joe Staley, who pinch hit for SFA to lead off the inning.
Watson then allowed a line-drive single by Zach Gardner, that got over the glove of McPherson at second base into right field to put the game-winning run on base for SFA.
The Mavericks then brought in Matt Otteman - who was also the designated hitter - who promptly struck out shortstop Tanner Hines on three straight pitches for the second out of the inning.
Gardner stole second base with left-handed batter Sean Meyers at the plate which led to an intentional walk to Meyers, giving the Jacks runners at first and second base with two outs.
With third baseman Brian Ferguson at the plate, Otteman threw a wild pitch that allowed Gardner and Meyers to advance and then two pitches later uncorked a wild pitch on a slider in the dirt that got past catcher Chad Price towards the third-base dugout to allow Gardner to score the winning run.
Mavericks starting pitcher Jason Mitchell and SFA starter Brett Rogers both earned no decisions as Watson - who allowed Gardner to reach base in the 10th - was the losing pitcher and SFA reliever Richard Folmer earned the win. Folmer tallied saves on Friday and Saturday in the series and capped off the sweep with the victory.
All three of UT Arlington's runs scored in the game were unearned as both of SFA's errors led to runs for the Mavericks. The middle of the Mavericks' batting order continued to produce as Michael Choice, Otteman and Andrew Kainer combined went 5-for-14 with two runs scored. The Mavericks finished with eight base hits in the game.
Kainer continued his hitting streak with a line-drive double to the right-center field gap in the fourth inning - extending his UT Arlington school-record hit streak to 30 games.
Mitchell threw 8 2/3 innings for the Mavericks, allowing nine hits, three runs and three walks with four strikeouts. Choice and Otteman each went 2-for-5 to lead the Mavericks at the plate.
The Mavericks drop to 4-4 in extra-inning games this season while SFA picked up its first extra-inning win in its sixth try.
UT Arlington will be back on the road on Tuesday, April 28, traveling to No. 25 Oklahoma State in Stillwater, Okla., for a 6:30 p.m. first pitch at Allie P. Reynolds Stadium.