Hardin-Simmons’ baseball team split an American Southwest Conference doubleheader with Sul Ross State, losing 6-3 in the first game before taking the three-game series with a 10-4 win in the rubber game, in action at Hunter Field on Saturday.
In the first game, Sul Ross made the Cowboys pay for three errors with four unearned runs in the 6-3 loss.
Josh Vasquez doubled with one out in the first for the Lobos and scored on an Emmett Crisp RBI single. Brian Lalima later scored Crisp when he hit a shot off Cowboy starter James Simmons for an infield RBI single.
The Lobos made it 4-0 with two runs in the third. Crisp reached on an error by Cowboy shortstop Jon Finney and came around to score on a Jesse Loter single. Ely Gallego later drove home Loter.
HSU made it 4-1 with an RBI single by Troy Nicholson in the bottom of the third. SRSU pushed it to 6-1 in the fifth with a pair of runs. Dakota Dill walked and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt. Brian Lalima then hit a perfect bunt that Simmons tried to make a spectacular play on but his throw to first got away and Dill scored. Lalima scored on an error by Marcus Uechi.
The Cowboys threatened in the bottom of the seventh of the seven inning game. Finney and Uechi each single to start the inning and Andrew Bell hit a rocket up the middle but it hit the mound and popped up in the air for a fielder’s choice. Nicholson followed with an RBI single and Colson Craddick hit a fly ball that was caught on the warning track.
Ryan Reagor had an RBI single then Zack Patino grounded out to end the game.
Simmons went the distance for the Cowboys and stuck out eight batters. He allowed six runs (two earned) on 10 hits to fall to 2-3 on the year.
Dakota Dill worked a complete-game for the Lobos and threw 132 pitches. He scattered 11 hits, allowed three runs and struck out nine to improve to 2-0 on the year.
Josh Vasquez, Dill, Loter and Lalima all had two hits for the Lobos and Nicholson led the Cowboy offense with three hits.
HSU used a familiar path to success to earn the series win. Matt Rhodes threw six strong innings and the closer Tyler Brunnemann slammed the door on SRSU.
Colson Craddick put the Cowboys on the board with a two-run double in the first inning. Uechi and Nicholson had RBI singles in the second inning to make it 4-0.
SRSU scored a run in the third on an RBI fielder’s choice by Vasquez. Jon Finney had an RBI single for HSU in the fourth and Caleb Jacques had an RBI on a groundout. Jacques added a two-run double in the fifth to make it 10-1.
In the sixth inning, HSU had three errors in the inning that led to three runs. Vasquez had an RBI triple, Dill had a sacrifice fly and Crisp reached on a double error by Jacques on a grounder to third that Jacques bobbled then threw away.
Matt Rhodes worked six innings and allowed just one earned run for the Cowboys. He allowed just four hits and struck out three. He improved to 1-2 on the year and turned the game over to Brunnemann.
Brunnemann was simply dominant as he worked three scoreless innings allowing just one hit and he struck out all nine batters he retired in the three inning save.
Ray Gutierrez, the first of five SRSU pitchers took the loss to fall to 1-4 on the year. He allowed four runs and walked four and allowed five hits in an inning and two-thirds.
Uechi led the Cowboys with three hits and Jacques drove in three runs. Five different Lobos had one hit each.
HSU is now 11-5 overall and 2-1 in ASC play. Sul Ross State fell to 6-12 and 1-2 in conference action. HSU will host Texas-Dallas for a doubleheader on Tuesday at 2 p.m.
Information for this story provided by ACU Sports Information.