It might have been Good Friday on the calendar for the Texas A&M-Kingsville baseball team this past Friday, March 29, but for the players it wasn’t very good. The Javelinas (22-10, 6-6) allowed the visiting Tarleton State Texans a split of a four-game series with a 7-2 and 6-4 victories at Nolan Ryan Field. The double header sweep of the Hogs, during which they allowed 13 runs, came just a day after they won the first two games of the series on strong pitching. Allowing just one run in 16 innings of work on their way to back-to-back wins of 4-0, 6-1 on Thursday, March 28, over the then Lone Star Conference leading Texans. “We didn’t get here ready to play. I don’t think we were focused and we have become a below average team when we’re not focused,” said Head Coach Jason Gonzales. With the Javelinas recent Jekyll and Hyde performance during the series split with the Texans, they now sit with a .500 record in conference play through 12 games with a 6-6 mark, tied with two other teams (Incarnate Word and Angelo State) for third in the conference standings. The Hogs get a one-game break from conference play as they get set to play Texas A&M International (21-12) today in Laredo at 6 pm. It won’t be an easy one for the Javelinas, as they will need another strong outing from their pitchers and will have to play a Dust Devils team who is currently riding a five-game winning streak, outscoring their opponents 42-11 in those five games. Dallas Ponder (7-0) pitched a complete game shutout giving up only four hits in seven innings of work en route to the Javelinas school record seventh shutout of the season with a 4-0 win. Taylor Taska (5-0) dropped his earned run average to a team best 0.35 pitching six innings of scoreless baseball, scattering six hits, leading the way for the Hogs in their 6-1 victory. In the two victories the Hogs outscored the Texans 10-1 belting out 21 hits. In game three the Javelinas’ Zach Pettiford (3-3) couldn’t continue the strong pitching for the Hogs as he gave up five earned runs in just three innings of work, his shortest outing of the season.All five runs were scored in the third inning, dooming the Hogs to a 7-2 loss. Matt Rhodes had a solid outing in game four pitching six innings giving up two runs, but it was Denver
Diefenbach (1-2) who got saddled with the loss giving up two runs without recording an out leading to a 6-4 loss. In the two losses the Javelinas gave up 24 hits while being outscored 13-6 while committing three errors. “We just have to flush out these losses and move on, these games don’t allow us to feel sorry for ourselves and if we do then we will find ourselves in the same position we are in today,” said Gonzales. Javelinas will have no time to dwell as they play in Laredo today at 6 pm, before a four-game series at Cameron, Okla. (8-20, 2-10) starting Friday April 5.