HAMMOND, La. – The University of Tennessee at Martin baseball team held a pair of leads this afternoon at Southeastern Louisiana but the Lions rallied for a pair of runs in the bottom of the eighth to claim a 5-3 win.
Senior first baseman Wade Collins led the Skyhawks with a pair of hits today, also scoring a run for UT Martin (0-2). Freshman Kenny King scored and drove in a run, while Grant Glasser (run scored) and Nico Zych (RBI) also contributed to the Skyhawk offensive attack today.
On the mound, sophomore Taylor Cox shined in his first career start, allowing just one earned run in 4.2 innings. The southpaw fanned three while allowing just four hits and a walk but received a no-decision. Trevor Lundgrin (one inning, one run) and John Houston (2.1 innings, three strikeouts) also made appearances, with Houston being saddled with the loss.
The Skyhawks struck first, scoring a run in the opening frame. Glasser reached on an error and advanced to third on a single by Sonny Mastromatteo. King then drove in Glasser on an RBI groundout to give UT Martin a 1-0 advantage.
Cox made the run stand up through three innings, as he kept Southeastern Louisiana off the scoreboard and sat the Lions down in order on only 10 pitches in the third.
UT Martin opened the fourth with back-to-back singles but could not push across a run. In the bottom half of the frame, Southeastern Louisiana’s Jameson Fisher stole home with two outs to tie the score at 1-all.
The Lions took the lead thanks to an unearned run. Lundgrin relieved Cox and induced an inning-ending flyout with a runner in scoring position to keep the score at 2-1.
The Skyhawks did not trail for long, reclaiming the lead with a two-run sixth inning. King was hit by a pitch with one out and advanced to second on a Collins single. Both runners then advanced on a wild pitch. With two outs, Zych singled to score King and Collins came home on an error to propel UT Martin on top by a 3-2 margin.
Southeastern Louisiana tied the game in the bottom of the sixth thanks to a two-out double. Houston entered the game in the inning and stranded the runner on second.
Both teams had one baserunner apiece in the seventh inning but could not break the tie. UT Martin’s Matt Young accounted for one of the game’s two extra-base hits with a double in the eighth inning, but did not score.
Houston tallied two strikeouts in the eighth, but a pair of RBI singles by Southeastern Louisiana provided the final 5-3 scoring margin.
The Skyhawks will look for their first win of the season when these two teams round out the season-opening series on Sunday, Feb. 17 at 1 p.m.