Offensive woes lead to Tarleton twin bill defeat

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STEPHENVILLE – Tarleton struggled to get anything going offensively in the series opening doubleheader against SFA and fell in both games.

Game 1: SFA 1, Tarleton 0

A bloop RBI single into left with two outs in the sixth was all the damage the Stephen F. Austin Ladyjacks could muster against Tristan Bridges, who was stellar in the series opener Friday night.

Unfortunately for the Texans, that’s all SFA needed to win the 1-0 pitcher’s duel.

Bridges was masterful in all seven innings of work, but a leadoff walk in the sixth eventually came around to score the lone run of the game on a two-strike, two-out bloop single just beyond the outstretched glove of Morgan Medford in shallow left field.

SFA had a chance to really open the flood gates in the fifth when SFA catcher Gaby Garcia ripped a two-out line drive into left field but senior Hallie Saintignan saved multiple runs with a tremendous running play in the gap.

The junior southpaw allowed the game’s only run on five hits and three walks while striking out seven. She inched closer to Jill Ratliff on the school’s all-time strikeouts list and now sits 18 behind Ratliff (276) with 258 career strikeouts.

Offensive, Tarleton only managed multiple baserunners in the fourth inning and were otherwise held in check. Morgan Medford and Georgia Capell had the only two hits of the game.

Game 2: SFA 6, Tarleton 1

Tarleton suffered a doubleheader sweep with a 6-1 loss to SFA in the nightcap.

SFA got the scoring started against Texan starter Julia Wernet with two runs in the top of the third with two outs. The Jacks pieced together a single and two doubles before Kennedy Ferguson came on in relief and limited the damage to two.

Tarleton appeared primed to make some noise in the bottom of the fourth inning when Brady Rowland led off the inning with a single to right field. The next hitter Katy Schaefer grounded to third, but the throw to second pulled the defender off the bag. After an appeal from SFA, the first base umpire overturned the decision and called Bella Hernandez out at second. Tarleton went on to end the frame with no runs.

Hallie Saintignan and Mackenzie Peterson tried to spark a two-out rally in the fifth with back-to-back singles, but the Texans couldn’t push any runs and headed into the final two frames of the game trailing 3-0.

After SFA tacked on three insurance runs in the sixth and seventh, Tarleton’s offense showed signs of life in the form of pinch hitters off the bench. Austin Germain led off the inning with a single through the right side and then Makayla Romeo dropped an RBI double down the right field line.

Tarleton loaded the bases after the Romeo double with one out but could push no more as the Ladyjacks won 6-1.

Morgan Medford led the team with two hits while Brady Rowland, Germain, Romeo, Saintignan and Peterson accounted for the rest of Tarleton’s seven hits. Julia Wernet took the loss while Kennedy Ferguson, Chyanne Ellett, and Reagan Chism also saw time in the circle.

The Texans will be back in action tomorrow at 1 p.m. in Stephenville for the series finale.

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