April 29, 2009

ISLANDERS DOWN UTPA IN FINAL GAME OF SEASON SERIES

EDINBURG – The Texas A&M-Corpus Christi scored multiple runs in four different innings on Tuesday night as the Islanders defeated Texas-Pan American 12-7 at Edinburg Baseball Stadium to win the season series 4-3.

The Islanders moved to 17-29, while the Broncs are 11-36. The Islanders visit Rice on Wednesday at Reckling Park in Houston. The Owls are second in the nation in multiple polls with a 28-10 record.

A&M-Corpus Christi got a solid team effort at the plate throughout the game especially early as it overcame a 4-3 deficit after two innings by scoring four runs in the fourth. The Islanders had 14 hits as a team. Stephen Flora, who had an RBI single in the first inning, followed an run scoring hit by Martin Parra with a two-run double. Trey Hernandez gave the Islanders a 7-4 lead with a sacrifice fly.

"I thought we swung the bats as well as have since San Antonio," said Islander head coach Scott Malone. "We had a lot more consistency with our swing and that led to a lot of good at bats. Omar Garcia is continuing to come on earning more playing time. Some of our key returnees also did as Trey was more involved and Ernie Olivarez drove in four runs, while Stephen Flora knocked in three."

The Broncs would pull to within a run at 7-6 with single runs in the third and fourth innings. The Islander bullpen led by Justin Grota and Phillip Garcia would slow down the Broncs offense allowing just one run after the fourth inning.

A&M-Corpus Christ took a three run in the seventh with a pair of runs. With one away, Hernandez, who was 2-for-3, tripled and scored on a single by Ernie Olivarez. Olivarez, who led all players with four RBI, was driven in by Jonathan Reyes.

In the top of the ninth the Islanders sealed the win with three solo home runs. Olivarez capped a 3-for-5 performance with his first homer of the season. After Jacob Perales hit his fourth long ball of the season, Jeremy Narvaez belted the first home run of his collegiate career.

Grota claimed the win for the Islanders moving to 3-3 on the season. He scattered two hits over 2-1/3 innings allowing an earned run. Scott Wingo took the loss allowing seven runs with five earned on seven hits. He is now 3-5

"Grota really pitched well out of the bullpen and slowed them down in the middle of the game," said Malone. "Phillip Garcia was also solid."

The Islanders finished with 14 hits led by Olivarez with three. Garcia, Flora and Hernandez each had a pair of hits. Garrett Bivone led all players with four hits.