By Reily Chestnut
Texas State continues to roll through Cajun country with their woes as they fall short to Louisiana-Lafayette by a score of 4-3 in the Sunday series finale.
For Texas State, it just continues the trend of struggles in conference competition as the ‘cats have now dropped four straight Sun Belt series, last winning a SBC series against the Warhawks, who hail from Monroe, Louisiana.
This game proved especially difficult for Ty Harrington and the Bobcat boys as the game started with a great opening three innings where the ‘cats, following their 8-4 win on Saturday, had a 2-0 lead when Teddy Hoffman started the ‘cats with a 1st inning RBI single and Mickey Scott followed in the 2nd inning with an RBI groundout. The pitching was looking even more dynamite as starter Cam Baird had retired 9 of the first 10 batters he faced.
But then things got muddy real fast for Baird and the Bobcats boys in the bottom of the 4th.
It started with a lead off single by Ragin’ Cajuns second basemen Brenn Conrad and quickly escalated with the following batter, Louisiana right fielder Steven Sensley, cracking a two-run home run into right centerfield to tie the good and erase some goodwill Baird had maybe built from his first three innings. But that wasn’t all folks for Louisiana in that 4th as they were just getting cracking. Flash forward past a sacrifice fly, a double steal on the ‘cats defense and suddenly the Ragin’ Cajuns had a four run 4th. The Bobcats would manage a slight rebuttal in the top of the 5th with Jonathan Ortega stroking an RBI double to bring home Jacob Almendarez and score it 4-3 Louisiana but that would be all the offense we’d see for the game.
The rest of the game would see the 7th and 8th inning spoiled and swiped of any comeback for the Cardiac ‘Cats with two situations where the ‘cats could’ve tied and even taken a lead for Louisiana before an double play ended that situation in the Bobcat 7th while a double play in the Bobcat 8th cleared the bases and put two outs on the board before Dylan Paul was still able to get to third only to be stranded and end the comeback prematurely. That would be the final flicker of hope in this one as the ‘cats were ended in the 9th and the score settled as 4-3 Louisiana while leaving Texas State’s hopes of capturing their first regular season series victory over the Ragin’ Cajuns iced for another year.
The loss now sticks the Bobcats with a twenty-five and twenty-seven record while now stuck at five below .500 with an eleven and sixteen record in Sun Belt play. Despite the struggle though in SBC play, the ‘cats were given a spot in the Sun Belt tournament today by virtue of Georgia State being swept by Little Rock.
So with the Tournament spot set for a Bobcats team currently tied for seventh with Little Rock and Arkansas State in the standings but ninth in tournament seeding due to losing both regular season series to both the Trojans and Red Wolves.
The ‘cats will look to fine tune this Tuesday in H-Town against the Rice Owls with first pitch at 6:30 on KTSW.
Featured image by Jessica Calderon.