April 21, 2013

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MARTIN, Tenn. – Four University of Tennessee at Martin baseball players produced multi-hit outings this afternoon, but Morehead State scored the first eight runs of the game on its way to an 11-6 win at Skyhawk Field.

The Skyhawks (10-29, 3-18 Ohio Valley Conference) were led offensively by Taylor Cox, who went 3-for-4 with a pair of RBI’s out of the No. 6 hole. Grant Glasser, Sonny Mastromatteo and Nico Zych all had two hits, a run scored and an RBI today, while Byron Johann, Luis Paublini and Drew Erie each scored a run.

On the mound, starting pitcher Dalton Potts (4-5) was charged with the loss after allowing eight runs in 2.2 innings. John Skubina pitched well in relief, allowing just one run while fanning four over a career-high 5.1 innings to give UT Martin a chance at the end of the game.

“Getting down early is a tough thing to overcome but we fought and got back in the game late,” Skyhawk head coach Bubba Cates said. “We made some adjustments but it was just a tough day.”

Potts recorded a pair of strikeouts in the first inning but Morehead State scored twice to take a 2-0 lead. After a two-out double by Cox in the second, Hagen Nelson sent a grounder up the middle that appeared to be an RBI hit before Eagle shortstop Chase Greenwell made a diving stop to rob the Skyhawks of a run.

Morehead State tacked on six runs in the third but Skubina would soon halt the Eagle offense. He pitched around a pair of hits by inducing a double play and inning-ending strikeout in the fourth, then followed that with a perfect 13-pitch inning in the fifth.

UT Martin got a pair of runs back in the bottom of the fifth. Paublini (reached on a fielder’s choice) and Erie (two-out bunt single) came around to score on a single and error in center off the bat of Glasser to make the score 8-2.

The Eagles scored a run in the sixth thanks to a sacrifice fly, but Skubina retired the side in order in the seventh and pitched around a two-out single to work a scoreless eighth inning.

Mastromatteo ignited a three-run eighth inning for the Skyhawks, singling to open the frame. After a Johann walk and a Matt Haynes groundout to the right side that advanced the runners up 90 feet, Zych looped a double out to center that plated Mastromatteo. Following a pitching change, Cox jumped on the first pitch he saw for a line drive single to right center, slicing UT Martin’s deficit to 9-5.

Morehead State added two more runs in the top of the ninth but the Skyhawks kept battling. Glasser doubled to right center with one away in the bottom of the ninth and came around to score after Mastromatteo singled to center. However, UT Martin would not see another baserunner after that.

The Skyhawks return to action on Tuesday, April 23 at Central Arkansas. First pitch is scheduled for 3 p.m.