PORTALES, N.M. – Tarleton suffered a 2-1 setback in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader at Eastern New Mexico, but bounced back in a big way to take the nightcap 13-2.
Game 1: Eastern New Mexico 2, Tarleton 1
Tarleton’s offense just ran out of time in the seven-inning doubleheader opener Saturday and suffered a 2-1 loss to the Greyhounds.
Eastern New Mexico’s only marks against Thomas were unearned as the Greyhounds tacked on a run in the second and an run in the sixth. Meanwhile the Texan offense managed only a single run in the seventh on an RBI ground out from Cameron Lang. Tarleton stranded runners on the corners to end the game.
Cody Vannoy led the team with two of the four hits while Tyler Fowler and Blake Burns had one each. Thomas took the tough-luck loss on the mound with five innings of work, allowing two unearned runs on four hits while striking out six. Michael Pilato worked a flawless sixth inning in relief.
Game 2: Tarleton 13, Eastern New Mexico 2
The Texans rebounded from the game-one setback to pound the Hounds in the nightcap, 13-5.
Tarleton wasted no time in trying to generate offense by pulling off some movement on the base paths in the first inning. With two away and runners on the corners, Luke Morton stole second and Blake Burns scored on the throw attempt to second to get the Texans on the board for a 1-0 lead.
In the second, Tarleton opened the flood gates with a six-run frame.
An error by the Hounds that turned a strikeout to begin the inning into a Tarleton baserunner at first was followed by a London Green RBI triple. Green also scored on a second error of the inning to extend it out to 3-0. After another first-and-third play allowed Ian Groves to score on a Zach Mesa steal made it 4-0, Blake Burns cashed in with a two-run single to right to push the Tarleton lead out to 6-0. Burns would later score on a wild pitch to cap off the scoring in the inning.
After a couple of scoreless innings, Tarleton picked things back up in the fifth with an RBI double from Green, an RBI single from Groves and a two-run single to left from Corey Young to push the lead out to 11-1. Tarleton scored two more in the seventh on an RBI sacrifice fly from Jordan Parker and an RBI single from Lang while the Greyhounds delayed in the inevitable with a run in the bottom of the seventh.
Luke Baley was stellar in the start, going 4.0 innings and allowing one run on four hits while striking out five to earn his third win of the season. He was relieved by Jon Law, who threw three hitless innings allowing one run and striking out three. Law earned his first save with three innings of relief to close out the game.
The top four hitters in the Tarleton lineup – Fowler, Young, Burns and Morton – combined to go 8-16 in the game with Burns leading the way with a three-hit night. Green and Groves each had two hits while Lang and Mesa rounded out the offense.
Tarleton and Eastern New Mexico will close out the series in tomorrow’s finale at 2 p.m. CT.