March 3, 2010

ISLANDER BASEBALL KNOCKS OFF KINGSVILLE IN FINAL TUNEUP FOR SLC ACTION

In the first-ever meeting between the Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and Texas A&M-Kingsville baseball programs, the Islanders spotted the Javelinas the first run of the game but answered with 10 straight en route to a 11-6 win at Whataburger Field.

With the victory, the Islanders move to 5-2 on the season, while A&M-Kingsville falls to 9-8 on the year. The Islanders open Southland Conference action this weekend when they travel to San Marcos to face defending regular-season champion Texas State.

After Kingsville scored a single run in the top of the first, starting pitcher Marc Damon helped his own cause by driving in a run in Cory Ege with a single in the bottom of the inning.

"It was another good start by Mark tonight. He gave us some good innings to start the game," said head coach Scott Malone "We're still learning how to win games. It is a process. We caught a good Kingsville team at the right time. If we continue to play good defense, I'm confident in our offense to continue to do what they did tonight."

Ege gave the Islanders the lead in the bottom of the second as he blasted a three-run home run to right-center field off starter Scott Zimmerle. Ege would lead the Islanders with three hits with five RBI and three runs scored.

In the bottom of the third, the Islanders further broke open the game scoring six runs to lead 10-1. Weston Montgomery started the inning with a double and later scored as Chris Vergne drew a bases loaded walk - one of four walks in the inning. After Bobby Buckner scored on a wild pitch, Ege drove in the fourth run of the inning with a single. Jeramie Marek and Vergne came around to cross the plate on an error by the centerfielder.

Zimmerle was relieved midway through the inning by Robert Cox after loading the bases. The Javelina starter dropped to 1-1 on the year as he allowed seven runs with four earned in 2-1/3 innings of work. He gave up five hits and walked four.

Kingsville would pull to within six with a run in the fourth and two in the fifth off Damon. In the fourth Adrian Williams scored from third on a sacrifice fly. Brandon Rohr, who led the visitors with three hits, picked up his second RBI of the game in the fifth plating Clifton Thomas with a hit to left-center field. Travis Earles crossed the plate for the second run on a sacrifice fly.

Damon would earn the win moving to 2-0. He allowed four runs on five hits while striking out five. Four Islander relievers - Roman Madrid, Adam Hoelscher, Ian Campbell and Andrew Longoria - followed allowing just an unearned run on four hits in four innings of work. They combined for five strikeouts while walking none.

The Javelinas rallied for two runs in the top of the seventh with two away off Hoelscher to pull within four, 10-6. Earles began rally with a solo home run. Rohr scored an unearned run following an error at second by Buckner.

A&M-Corpus Christi re-awoke offensively in the bottom of the seventh. Omar Garcia, who had two hits and scored three runs, led off the inning with a single, stole second and advanced to third on an error on the steal. Vergne singled to drive in Garcia.