NATCHITOCHES, La. – The Texas A&M – Corpus Christi baseball team held the early lead, but gave up a pair of runs late in a 2-1 loss on the road against Northwestern State in Southland Conference action. The teams play the second game of the three-game series at 2 p.m. on Saturday at Brown-Stroud Field.
The Islanders move to 13-20 on the season, and are now 6-10 in Southland Conference games. The Demons improved their record to 14-17 overall, 10-6 in league play. Trevor Foss was the hard luck loser, pitching 6.1 innings and striking out a career-high eight batters, but gave up two runs, only one of them earned, on three hits to fall to 0-5 on the year.
Neither team was able to get anything going until the sixth, with the Islanders taking the early lead. After the leadoff hitter flied out to start things, Santiago Ruiz tripled to right field, and came in on a two-out RBI single by Drew Vest to make it a 1-0 game, with Vest advancing to second on a throwing error. After Eric Weiss walked to put runners on first and second, Jonathan Gonzales appeared to get a hit up the middle, but the ball bounced off of the shortstop and caromed to the second baseman for the final out of the inning.
The Demons got on the board in the bottom of the seventh innings, with a pair of Islander miscues costing them the lead. The leadoff hitter reached on an error, and moved to second on a single by the next batter. After a sacrifice bunt move the runners to second and third, an infield single scored the first runner to tie the game on an unearned run. Franco Pace came on to pitch for Foss, but was unable to record an out as he fielded a ball hit back to him, looked the runner back to third, but hesitated before throwing late to first and loading the bases on a single to the pitcher.
Phillip Garcia then came on with the bases loaded, but walked the first batter he faced to force in a run, giving NSU a 2-1 lead, before recording the final out of the inning.
The Islanders looked like they might mount a rally in the eighth after getting a leadoff single by Stafford Brantley, but Ruiz hit into a double play to end the threat.
The Demons threatened in the bottom of the eighth, but the Islanders were able to hold it to a one-run lead with a strikeout swinging and a ground out to end the inning.
Texas A&M – Corpus Christi was unable to get anything in the ninth to end the game at 2-1 in favor of NSU.
Game two will have Adam Hoelscher starting on the mound for the Islanders, while Jacob Roark will get the nod for the Demons.
Live stats for the 2 p.m. game will be available by visiting www.GoIslanders.com.
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