BASEBALL: Early struggles do Cardinals in at home against Demons

Published 12:13 am Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Lamar sports information

BEAUMONT – Lamar did its best overcome a four-run first inning on a drizzly Tuesday night against Northwestern State, but the comeback ultimately fell short despite six scoreless innings thrown up by the Cardinal pitching. Big Red (5-20, 1-8 Southland) fell to the Demons (13-11, 3-3 SLC) by a score of 7-2 in non-conference action.

The Demons opened the game with a four-pitch walk, and two pitches later a home run to left field gave Northwestern State a 2-0 lead. Another walk, two hits, an error, and a sac bunt allowed two more NSU runs across, giving the Demons a 4-0 lead through the top of the first. Cole Coker collected the first Cardinal triple of the year in the bottom of the inning with two outs, but he was stranded on a pop fly.

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With two outs and a runner on first, a wild pitch was followed by an RBI single that advanced to second on the throw home. Another two-out single scored the runner on second, giving Northwestern State a 6-0 lead.

The Cardinal comeback effort began in the bottom of the third. Rhett McCall singled to right field to lead off the inning and a one-out single by Philip Ingram through the middle of the infield put McCall on second.

With two outs Coker hit into a fielder’s choice that looked like it would end the inning, but the third baseman made an error on his throw to second base. That allowed McCall to score and put runners on the corners with two outs.

An RBI single from Robin Adames scored Ingram, pulling Lamar back within four runs, 6-2, through three innings.

Neither team would score again until the ninth inning thanks to stellar efforts from Jack Dallas, AbeRee Hiebert, Kristjan Storrie, Chet Jones, and Ryan Erickson. The Demons came close to scoring again in the eighth, loading up the bases with two outs, but Jones forced the final batter he faced to hit into a fielder’s choice to end the threat.

The final Northwestern State run came in the ninth. A leadoff single advanced to second on a 4-3 grounder, then reached third on a passed ball. A single to left field with two outs scored the runner on third, giving NSU the final margin of victory, 7-2.