April 5, 2009

ISLANDERS FALL IN SERIES FINALE TO LAMAR

BEAUMONT – The Texas A&M-Corpus Christi baseball team took the early lead in it series finale with Lamar on Sunday, but were outscored 7-1 in the final six innings to fall 11-7 and were unable to figure out relieve Ricky Testa who struckout 14 batters .

With the loss, A&M-Corpus Christi goes to 11-21 on the season and 3-12 in the Southland Conference. Lamar is now 22-10 overall and 9-6 in the league.

Tied at seven headed into the bottom of the seventh, Jeremiah Sammy walked and went to second a sacrifice bunt by Andy Mena. Sammy came home on a single by Ryan Saldivar. Chris Dunkin drove in a pair with a two-run double in the bottom of the eighth and plated the game final run.

On the mound, Testa shut down the Islanders with 14 of the17 outs recorded with him on the mound strikeouts. He allowed one run on seven hits to move to 3-2.

Trey Hernandez suffered the loss falling to 1-1 as he allowed five runs on five hits in 3-1/2 innings of relief. He fanned four.

After the first two games of the series resulted in eight combined runs, Sunday's finale was an offensive explosion. The teams had 10 runs in the first three innings

Trailing 1-0 after an RBI triple in the bottom of the first by Dunkin, the Islanders struck for four runs in the top of second inning. After Martin Parra led off the inning with a single, Weston Montgomery roped a two-run home run to left. Hernandez followed with a solo home run to right field. Brycen Bell kept things going reaching on an infield single and going to second on a throwing error by Dunkin. He would come around to score on a hit by Ernie Olivarez.

The lead didn't last long as the Cardinals struck for three runs in the bottom of the second. With one out, Saldivar singled and scored on Quentin Luquette's two-run home run to left.

V.J. Bunner followed with a solo home run that was originally called a foul ball. Lamar head coach Jim Gilligan argued the call and the umpires met and overturned the original call. Islander head coach Scott Malone came out and argued the overturning of the call to no avail.

Hernandez didn't let the overturn affect him in the top of the third as the sophomore put the Islanders back in front with his second home run of the game off Brian Needham. With two away, Montgomery single bringing to keep the inning alive and Hernandez launched a home run to left-center field for a 6-4 Islander lead.

After pulling to within a run, 6-5 on a sacrifice fly by Tyler Link in the fourth, Lamar plated a pair of runs in the bottom of the fifth. Dunkin singled and went to second Jeremiah Sammy walked. After Andy Mena moved the runners up with a sacrifice bunt and Hernandez hit Saldivar, Luquette added on to his RBI total with two more runs to give Lamar a 7-6 lead.

Parra tied the game for the Islanders in the top of the sixth inning at 7-7 with their only run off Testa. Jonathan Reyes reached on a one-out single and went to second on walk by Stephen Flora. Parra then picked up his third hit with a single to drive in Reyes.

The Islanders finished with 14 hits in the game. The 4-5-6-7 portion of the order went 12-20. Parra, Montgomery, Hernandez and Bell each had three hits. Hernandez recorded his second two home run game of the season. He now has 11 on the year and is fourth with 21 in his career. A&M-Corpus Christi fanned 18 times at the plate which is the most in school history.

Saldivar led the Cardinals with four hits as the hosts had 15.Luquette and Dunkin each had three.

The Islanders return to Chapman Field after six straight road games for a three-game series with Stephen F. Austin.