Offense Dominates in UALR’s Series Win Over Texas State

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LITTLE ROCK, AR – UALR baseball (13-18, 10-6) claimed the series against Texas State (16-17,8-6) with a 13-7 win on Saturday at Gary Hogan Field. Sunday’s series finale has been moved up to noon due to Texas State’s travel needs.

Tanner Rockwell was a perfect 5 for 5 as he doubled twice, singled three times and ended the game with three RBIs. Rockwell’s five hits tied the UALR record for hits in a game which had only been done 11 times before today’s game.

James Gillean continued his hot streak as he went 4 for 5 with a triple and four RBIs, while Petr Sila went 3 for 5 with one RBI and a walk.

“I’m extremely proud of our offense and how they’re making adjustments,” head coach Chris Curry said. “What a great job by coach Russell Raley and coach Roland Fanning on adjusting.”

UALR got on the board in the bottom of the first after Sila singled through the right side before eventually scoring on a wild pitch. Texas State evened the score in its next set of at-bats, plating its first run on a RBI single by Jared Huber in the top of the second.

The UALR offense exploded for five runs on five hits in the bottom half of the second. Kyle Barret, Justin Steelmon and Gillean started the frame with three straight singles, the last of which drove in the Trojans’ second run of the game. Sila plated the next run of the inning after reaching on a fielder’s choice. Ryan Scott’s double to right field drove in a run to make it a 4-1 game while also extending Scott’s hitting streak to 10 games. Finally, Rockwell’s single up the middle drove in two runs to give UALR a 6-1 lead after two innings of play.

Gillean’s two-RBI triple made it an 8-1 lead for the Trojans in the bottom of the third. Drew Merten drew a walk to lead off the inning while Steelmon reached on an infield single to set the stage for Gillean’s big hit.

The Trojans added four more runs over the fifth and sixth innings. With two outs, Sila singled through the left side and Scott drew a walk to give UALR runners at first and second. Rockwell’s single allowed Sila to score from second and chased starter Scott Grist from the game. With Justin Dellinger on to pitch for the Bobcats, a wild pitch allowed Scott to score the inning’s second run and grow UALR’s lead to 10-1.

After Texas State scored four runs on three hits and two walks in the top of the sixth to cut the margin to 10-5, UALR answered with two more runs to push its lead out to 12-5. Jason Prevatt reached base after being hit by a pitch, and was able to come all the way around to score on a fielder’s choice, groundout and passed ball. Gillean’s RBI single to center plated Barret for the Trojans’ second run of the game and extended the UALR lead to seven runs.

In the bottom of the seventh, Rockwell doubled off the left field wall to tie the UALR record for hits in a game (five). He advanced to third on a passed ball and scored on a sacrifice fly off the bat of Prevatt, making it a 13-5 lead for the Trojans.
The Bobcats scored two runs on two hits, two walks and a hit batsman in the top of the eighth to pull within 13-7.

Cameron Allen came on to relieve Dyllon Brownmiller in the ninth inning after Brownmiller pitched 2.1 innings before relieving starter Cory Malcom in the sixth. Allen closed out the game for the Trojans on 17 pitches to give UALR the season series over Texas State.

“We’re in really good shape on accomplishing our goal which is making the conference tournament,” Curry said. “It’s obvious that we’re not only in the conference tournament hunt, but we’re in the conference hunt. That’s fun. A lot of these guys haven’t experienced that, so that’s a blast.”

The Trojans’ 13 runs and 17 hits were the second-most in a game this season.

“This team is relentless,” Curry said. “They do not stop, and they keep coming at you.”

The Trojans will go for the series sweep against the Bobcats at Gary Hogan Field on Sunday with the first pitch taking place at noon.

(Courtesy: UALR Sports Information)

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