BASEBALL: Nicholls pulls away in eighth, beats Lamar 6-1

Published 9:34 pm Saturday, April 28, 2018

Lamar sports information

THIBODAUX, La. – Scoreless through three innings and tied at just one run apiece through seven, a five-run eighth inning was the difference in a 6-1 loss by Lamar (15-29, 9-14 Southland) at Nicholls State (18-26, 8-12 SLC) on Saturday night.

Lamar struck first, pushing one run across in the top of the fourth inning. Robin Adames led off with a single to left, then reached second when Cole Coker was walked in five pitches. A 5-3 sac bunt from Logan LeJeune advanced Coker and Adames one base each, and Cole Secrest brought Adames home on a sac fly to center. The Colonels worked runners onto the corners with two outs but Sills forced a flyout to center to end the inning. After four Lamar led 1-0.

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The Colonels responded with one run of their own in the bottom of the fifth. The first Colonel to the plate wore one and reached second on a bunt single. Following a strikeout the next Colonel singled to left on an 0-2 count, scoring one run and placing another Colonel in scoring position. An unassisted putout to first and a liner to right field ended the inning, but the two teams were tied 1-1 through five.

Nicholls came close to breaking the game open in the bottom of the seventh inning. After Sills got a flyout from the first Colonel he faced the next batter singled up the middle. A wild pitch put the runner on second, and he was joined on the base paths when the next batter was walked. A balk ended Sills’ night, and on a close call Jack Dallas walked the first batter he faced to load the bases. The freshman from Orange held his ground against the next two batters with an infield fly and a strikeout. After seven the score remained 1-1.

A lead-off double in the bottom of the eighth was almost harmless; the Cardinals froze the runner on second twice with ground-outs, but with two outs the Colonels managed to collect three more hits and draw three walks to score five runs, taking a 6-1 decision.

The rubber match for the three-game Southland Conference series is scheduled for a 1 p.m. start Sunday with LHP Jason Blanchard (0-4, 3.07 ERA) set to face RHP Jacob Bedevian (1-6, 6.00 ERA).

Following Sunday’s winner-take-all series finale, Lamar will briefly step out of conference play with a mid-week game at Rice on May 2 and a three-game, non-conference series at TCU May 4-6.

Southland Conference series at Stephen F. Austin (May 11-13) and at home against McNeese (May 17-19) leave the Cardinals plenty to play for; Big Red is just a game and a half out from the final SLC tournament spot.