Posted: Mar 29, 2013 9:21 PM
Updated: Mar 29, 2013 9:26 PM
KINGSVILLE, Texas - The Texas A&M-Kingsville baseball team went into Friday's doubleheader with Tarleton State looking to feed off the momentum of Thursday's doubleheader sweep in the opening day of the series. However, the Javelinas were unable to duplicate the feat falling 7-2 in game 1 and 6-4 in game two despite two Taylor Taska home runs to the Texans.
With the series split, Kingsville now sits at 6-6 in the Lone Star Conference and 22-10 overall. The Texans move to 20-10-1 and are 9-3 in the LSC.
In the opening game, Kingsville led 1-0 after Matt Perez singled, moved to second on a Ryan Guedry hit and advanced to third on a wild pitch. After James Black walked to load the bases, Perez raced home on a fielder's choice to short by Julian Duran.
The Texans responded with five runs in the third to take control. The visitors scored the five runs off Javelina starter Zachary Pettiford on just four hits, a pair of walks and two errors.
Pettiford was credited with the loss moving to 3-3 on the season. Garrett Kelly earned the win to improve his record to 3-2 on the year as he tossed 3-1/3 innings of 2-hit relief.
Chris Ballou pulled the hosts back to within three with an RBI double in the bottom of third, but just two Hoggies would reach scoring position in the final four innings.
TSU added single runs in the fifth and seventh innings. The final run was a solo home run by Rustin Thomas, who scored three runs in the game.
The Javelinas took the early lead behind the power of Taska and led much of the way.
Taska's first home run of game two gave the Javelinas a 2-0 lead. Cash Barker, who reached on a 1-out walk, scored on the blast to left field.
Tarleton tied the game in the second with a pair of runs off Matt Rhodes. Back-to-back singles by Ryan Small and Thomas started the inning with singles and advanced to third and second, respectively, on a wild pitch. Jared Musgrove drove in Small with a single up the middle. Thomas scored on a wild pitch to knot the game at two.
Rhodes went six innings allowing two runs on eight hits and a walk. He sent six batters down on strikes.
Taska again gave the Hoggies the lead as he broke the tie with a solo home run in the bottom of third for a 3-2 advantage. It was team-leading fifth home run of the season.
The Javelinas extended their lead to 4-2 in the bottom of the fourth. Barker drove in Duran with a single through the right side of the infield.
The Javelinas could not extend the lead.
After a run in the seventh off reliever Tres Tyler, Tarleton scored three times in the eighth off of usual bullpen stalwarts Denver Diefenbach and Jeremy Flores.
Small drove in Colten Boothe for the inning's first run to tie the game. Small raced home on a double down the line in left by Fola LaJide off Diefenbach (1-2) to give the Texans a 5-4 lead. Thomas scored on a sacrifice fly off Flores by Musgrove for a 6-4 advantage.
Kingsville could not mount a rally of its own as only Ben Villafuerte reached in the final two innings as he drew a two-out walk in the eighth but was stranded.
Kody Thiebaud earned his first win of the season tossing 2-2/3 innings of relief, while Britt Robershaw earned his second save with a 1-2-3 ninth.
The Javelinas head to Laredo on Tuesday for a mid-week game against Texas A&M International at 6 p.m. They visit Cameron in Lawton, Okla. in a 4-game series next Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
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