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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Baseball loses to Little Rock in three-game sweep

Texas+State+sophomore+outfielder+Ben+McClain+%2819%29+prepares+to+bunt+the+incoming+Rice+pitch%2C+Wednesday%2C+March+17%2C+2021%2C+at+Bobcat+Ballpark.

Texas State sophomore outfielder Ben McClain (19) prepares to bunt the incoming Rice pitch, Wednesday, March 17, 2021, at Bobcat Ballpark.

Texas State baseball (8-13 overall, 0-3 Sun Belt) suffered a 3-0 series loss against the University of Arkansas at Little Rock Trojans (9-7 overall, 3-0 Sun Belt) from March 19-21.
It was the first in-conference matchup for both teams going into the series and came directly on the heels of the Bobcats’ 16-5 run-in victory against Rice University.
In the first game, senior pitcher Zachary Leigh took the mound for Texas State. While the Bobcats could not get a man on base in the first two innings, Leigh prevented the Trojans from gaining an early advantage, as he had three strikeouts and also picked off a runner.
The Trojans got on the scoreboard 1-0 at the bottom of the third inning as senior infielder Jorden Hussein hit an RBI single out to right field. Even then, two strikeouts by Leigh ended the inning and ultimately prevented Little Rock from gaining momentum.
The Bobcats got on the board in the fourth, with sophomore infielder/outfielder Jose Gonzalez scoring on a balk.
The Bobcats had an opportunity to take the lead in the fifth as the bases were loaded with senior outfielder Will Hollis at-bat, yet he struck out. Then, junior infielder Justin Thompson struck out. The inning concluded after Gonzalez hit a fly ball out to center field.
The contest remained tied until the bottom of the eleventh inning when Little Rock sophomore outfielder Tyler Williams hit a walk-off homer to end the game 2-1.
The Bobcats went 7-36 and were struck out 12 times. Leigh finished the game with six strikeouts and only allowed one run in six innings.
During the second contest, both teams went scoreless in the first two innings. At the bottom of the third, Tyler Williams hit an RBI single to put the Trojans on the board 1-0. Soon after, sophomore outfielder Noah Dickerson hit a double out to left-center to bring home Tyler Williams and Hussein to go up 3-0.
Little Rock senior catcher John Michael Russ hit a two-RBI double. Russ scored soon after off a wild pitch. That, along with a pair of RBI singles, put the Trojans up 8-0.
Texas State could not keep up with the Trojans. By the end of the fifth, the Bobcats only managed to get three hits.
At the bottom of the sixth, Dickerson got an RBI single and in the seventh, junior infielder Nathan Lyons hit a single-run homer out to left field to bring the lead to 10-0.
A two-run home run in the eighth solidified the shutout to give Little Rock a 12-0 victory.
This time around, Texas State hit 7-34 and struck out 12 times. Little Rock went 16-41 and suffered a mere six strikeouts.
In the final game of the series, the Bobcats were the first team ahead, taking a 2-0 lead off a pair of RBI singles from junior infielder Wesley Faison and graduate catcher Bryce Bonner in the first inning.
The Trojans were not able to respond for a large chunk of the game and suffered two straight one-two-three innings in the second and third.
Little Rock got on the board in the bottom of the fifth when junior infielder Miguel Soto hit a solo home run followed by an RBI single to tie the game at 2-2.
At the bottom of the seventh, an RBI single broke the tie, giving Little Rock a 3-2 lead. A triple by Hussein out to left-center field allowed two runners to run to home plate and give the team a 5-2 lead late in the game.
Senior infielder Jaxon Williams then hit a shot out to left field, allowing Faison and Gonzalez to cut the deficit to 5-4.
However, hope did not last long. Little Rock senior outfielder Kenny Rodriguez hit a two-RBI single out to left field to grab a 7-4 victory and series sweep.
For the game, Faison went 1-4 with two runs and an RBI, Gonzalez went 1-4 with a run and a double and Thompson went 1-5 with a run and a double.
Next, Texas State will play host to the University of Oklahoma Sooners (12-7) on March 24. The game will mark the third contest between the two teams and the first since Feb. 2, 2007, when the Bobcats won 8-3.
The Sooners are looking to extend their six-game win streak. The Bobcats are hoping to halt their three-game losing streak.
Both teams compare well statistically from the mound, with OU holding a slight advantage. OU has a 5.55 earned run average, 1.39 WHIP and 187 strikeouts. On the other hand, Texas State has a 6.02 earned run average, a 1.61 WHIP and 176 strikeouts.
Junior infielder Tyler Hardman leads the way for the Sooners with a team-high in batting percentage (.467), hits (35) and runs (25). Senior infielder Conor McKenna leads the team in RBI (23) and home runs (5).
For Texas State, Thompson has a .363 batting percentage and leads the Maroon and Gold in hits (29), RBI (21) and doubles (6). Hollis has team-highs in runs (14) and home runs (4).
The matchup will begin at 6 p.m. in Bobcat Ballpark. The game will be streamed on ESPN+.

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