ACU scored four runs in the third inning Friday night and that offense backed a solid effort from starting pitcher Aaron Lambrix as the Wildcats snapped an eight-game losing streak to Angelo State with a 7-2 win over the Rams in the first game of a four-game Lone Star Conference baseball series at Crutcher Scott Field.
The win pushes the Wildcats to 28-19 overall and 15-10 in the LSC as they remain tied with Texas A&M-Kingsville for second behind league-leading Tarleton State (17-7). The Rams, meanwhile, fall to 30-17 and 14-11 and into fourth place in the league standings. ACU and Angelo State will continue their series Saturday with a 2 p.m. doubleheader.
The Wildcats trailed 1-0 going to the bottom of the fourth before the first three batters of the inning reached base, including Travis Schuetze and Ty Taylor, each of whom reached on bunts when they were trying to sacrifice and the Rams failed to properly cover in the infield.
With the bases loaded, Tyler Eager beat out an infield hit that plated Emmett Niland to tie the score at 1-1. The ball then got past second bseman Tyler Coughenour for an error, allowing Schuetze to score the go-ahead run.
After a Chuck Duarte sacrifice bunt moved runners to second and third, Kyle Giusti singled to center field to drive in Taylor and make it 3-1. Kyle Conwell then followed with a sacrifice fly to plate Eager with the final run of the inning.
ACU would tack on another run in the fifth and two more in the sixth as the Wildcats pushed their lead to 7-1.
That and a couple of spectacular catches in left field by Conwell would be more than enough for Lambrix, who handcuffed the Rams all night. He scattered six hits over seven innings of work and didn't allow an earned run while walking just two and striking out five Rams.
Brady Rodriguez continued his solid season by pitching the final two innings, giving up just one hit and striking out three Rams.
After going 0-3 against Angelo State in 2011 and 0-5 in 2012, ACU finally got back in the win column against the Rams. Before Friday, the last time the Wildcats had beaten the Rams was May 4, 2010, when they won 6-4 in the LSC Post-Season Tournament championship game in Abilene. The Wildcats now lead the all-time series 24-17.
Information provided by ACU athletics department.