March 1, 2014

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NACOGDOCHES, Texas – The University of Tennessee at Martin baseball team held a late lead in Game 1 and nearly matched Stephen F. Austin pitch for pitch in Game 2 but ultimately fell 10-6 and 1-0 to the Lumberjacks in a doubleheader played today at Jaycees Field.

Offensively, Drew Erie and Taylor Douglas each had multi-hit efforts in Game 1. Ben Upton crushed a three-run homer while Phil Sorensen added a pair of RBI’s in Game 1 but the Skyhawks were held to just two hits in Game 2, both of which came off the bat of Zack Malone.

On the mound, Alex Martin (0-2) went the distance in the seven-inning Game 2, yielding just one run on three hits before he was hit with the hard-luck loss. Dalton Potts received a no-decision in Game 1 after allowing four runs in 4.1 innings. Carter Smith followed with 2.2 scoreless innings but Chris Ross (0-1) was charged with the loss after allowing two earned runs while facing three batters. John Houston also made an appearance in Game 1, conceding three runs in one inning.

The Skyhawks continue their Spring Break road trip with a two-game midweek series at Central Arkansas on March 4-5.

Game 1

Stephen F. Austin pushed across six runs in the bottom of the eighth to come away with the 10-6 win.

The Lumberjacks struck first with a run in the first inning but Potts answered by retiring the side in order in the second inning and keeping Stephen F. Austin off the scoreboard in the third inning as well.

UT Martin evened the score at 1-1 in the top of the fourth. Nico Zych drew a one-out walk and later stole second. He then came around to score on a two-out RBI single by Kenny King.

Stephen F. Austin pushed across two runs in the fourth to go back ahead but the Skyhawks got one run back in the fifth. Three straight singles by Douglas, Chase Young and Erie loaded the bases with one out, setting up Sorensen for an RBI groundout to the right side to make the score 3-2.

The Lumberjacks scored one more run in the bottom half of the fifth before Smith posted a scoreless frame in the sixth.

A four-run seventh would then hand the Skyhawks their first lead of the game. Young was issued a one-out walk and Erie followed with a single that moved Young to third. Sorensen then reached on an error but was still credited with the RBI to make the score 4-3. After a popout resulted in two men on and two out, Upton pulverized a three-run shot that gave UT Martin a 6-4 advantage.

Smith then made short work of the Lumberjacks in the seventh, sitting down Stephen F. Austin in order.

However, the Lumberjacks would strike back as six runs crossed the plate in the eighth and the Skyhawks could not get a baserunner aboard in the top of the ninth.

Game 2

Martin shined on the mound for the Skyhawks but the UT Martin bats couldn’t back him up in a low-scoring affair that saw both teams combine for only five hits.

After a 1-2-3 first inning, a leadoff walk in the second inning doomed Martin. He would bounce back to strikeout the next Stephen F. Austin batter on just three pitches but Nick Ramos hit an RBI triple to center that gave the Lumberjacks a 1-0 advantage. Martin did recover to strand Ramos after inducing a pair of groundouts to close out the threat.

The Skyhawks would get baserunners in scoring position in the second and third innings but could not push a runner across the plate.

Martin pitched around a one-out walk in the third and a harmless two-out single in the fourth to post zeroes up on the scoreboard. Malone would lead off the fifth with a double to left center and advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt by Mikey Nantze. However, two strikeouts followed and UT Martin could not tie the game up.

Martin retired the side in order in the fifth and tallied another shutout frame in the sixth but the Skyhawks could not muster any more offense.

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