May 7, 2010
The victory puts the Mavericks (25-22-17-8) in second place in the Southland Conference with a narrow lead in the standings over the Lumberjacks (30-13, 16-8 SLC), who dropped just their fourth road game of the season (15-4).
"We have been in some of these types of games this season," UT Arlington head coach Darin Thomas said. "The key was getting their starter out of the game. Once we got Chad (Comer) to second base in the ninth I knew we had a shot a winning it. That is a very good hitting team that Jason shutout tonight."
Mitchell (6-3) lead the Mavericks to their ninth consecutive Southland Conference victory while throwing his fifth complete game - all in conference play - and second complete-game shutout of the season. Mitchell allowed only three hits and three walks with seven strikeouts.
Lumberjacks' starting left-handed pitcher Tyler Herriage took the no-decision throwing 7.2 scoreless innings allowing four hits and three walks with eight strikeouts. SFA reliever Jason West (3-4) took the loss throwing 0.2 innings allowing one hit and one run (unearned) with a walk and strikeout.
"This was a big game tonight," Mitchell said. "They were No. 2 in the conference and we were third coming into tonight, we had to win to stay on a roll. We are trying to win a conference championship."
Beck drove in the game-winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning with a double to deep center field to score Chad Comer from second base.
"We haven't given Jason much run support in his last two starts," Beck said. "It felt great to get him a win tonight. After how we have been playing in conference and after winning on Tuesday we have a lot of confidence right now. We have just really been putting together."
UTA All-American Michael Choice led off the ninth with a line-drive out to a diving Michael Haynes at third base. Comer reached base on a fielding error by Haynes before advancing to second base on a fielding error by first baseman Bobby Loveless on a pickoff attempt from West.
Beck worked the count to 2-2 while hitting the seventh pitch he saw from SFA relief pitcher to center field to give the Mavs their fifth walk-off victory of the season.
Choice reached base in the fourth inning with his nation leading 63rd walk to extend his reaching base safely streak to 59 consecutive games dating back to last season.
Only two Lumberjacks had base hits in the game as Bobby Loveless went 2-for-3 and Ryan Priest went 1-for-4.
The Mavericks and Lumberjacks Southland Conference three-game series continues Saturday, May 8, with a 2:10 p.m. first pitch at Clay Gould Ballpark.
Prior to the game at 1:40 p.m., the UT Arlington baseball program will recognize former Maverick and current Kansas City Royals manager Trey Hillman with the retirement of his No. 1 jersey with an on-field ceremony at Clay Gould Ballpark.
Hillman was a four-year standout for the Mavericks from 1982-85. UTA will also honor former Mavericks Dave Owen (1977-79) and Steve Foster (1987-88), who are currently the third-base coach and bullpen coach for the Royals. Owen was the first Maverick player to reach the Major Leagues and Foster was the first Maverick pitcher to reach the big leagues.