Estrada lifts the no. 1 Pilots to a split with UTB
April 13, 2012
SHREVEPORT, La. - The no. 1 LSU Shreveport Pilots split Friday's double header with the UT-Brownsville Scorpions falling in the first game 2-1 before rebounding for an 8-7 with in the night cap. Manny Estrada's solo home run in the bottom of the eight lifted the Pilots past the Scorpions.
GAME 1, L 2-1
The Pilots had their 16-game win streak snapped with a 2-1 loss to the UT-Brownsville Scorpions the first game of the twin bill in a pitcher's duel. Jared Mortensen (8-1) worked a complete game but suffered his first loss of the season. The senior right hander worked seven innings scattering four hits and allowing two earned runs. Mortensen retired 10 batters in a row from the third inning to the seventh before UT-Brownsville rallied for the winning run.
Mortensen retired the first batter looking for the punch out but a single, a walk, and a sacrifice fly scored the winning run for the visitors to hand the Pilots their first loss since being ranked #1. The Scorpions scored their first run of the game with a lead-off homer from Robert Garza as Mortensen struggled to command his pitches in the first inning but he settled in once he got past the top of the first.
The Pilots struggled against the soft-throwing left hander Zach Armstrong (5-2) who pitched a magnificent game as he kept the nation's top team on their front foot all night as they could not break his rhythm and only managed a single run with came in the second inning from a RBI single from David Dorton who was one of only three Pilots to get a base hit.
GAME 2, W 8-7
The night cap feature what appeared to be a blow out win for the Pilots into a game when the Scorpions put six runs on the board in the top of the fifth inning after LSUS led 7-0 after four innings. The big rally had the help of six hits and two walks as LSUS starter Matt Lackie was pulled in favor of Drew Middleton who did not fare much better as all three inherited runners came in to score; one on a wild pitch, the next on a ground out, and the final run on a single.
The Pilots (36-4, 18-4 RRAC) escaped the disastrous sixth inning with the lead 7-6 LSUS' reliever Jason Mouton stymied the UTB bats as he retired the first six batters that he faced until he surrendered a lead-off single to start the eighth inning as the Scorpions tied the game later in the frame with a RBI single from Peter Maldanado.
LSUS' Manny Estrada stepped up to the plate and hit a 3-2 pitch over the left field wall as the Pilots took an 8-7 lead to the ninth inning. The fourth reliever of the game for the Pilots Cam Ellis retired the first batter of the inning but then beaned the next which led to his departure as the Pilots called on Jake Kight to finish the game. Kight induced a fly ball and then a line out to earn his third save of the year. Ellis (2-1) was the winning pitcher.
The Pilots scored the first run of the contest with a RBI groundout by Greg Friesen in their first at bat and then added five in the second inning which led to the departure of the UTB starting pitcher Matt Laffler. Stephen Hobbins ripped a double down the left field line to start the rally. Following a ground out the next seven LSUS' batters reached on six hits as Kym Barthel had a RBI single as did Kyle Pearson and Ridge Gonsoulin a two-run double before K.P. and Estrada later added a RBI single in the inning.
LSUS had 15 hits in the night cap while Brownsville (28-19, 16-7 RRAC) scattered nine hits. The Pilots had five batters with a multi-hit game while UTB had only one.
The series will conclude tomorrow afternoon at Pilot Field at 1 p.m. and all of the action can be heard live on the internet at teamline.cc.