It took a walk-off hit for the Texas A&M-Kingsville Javelinas to overcome three errors to pick up a slim 4-3 win in the series finale with visiting Abilene Christian Wildcats on Sunday March 24 at Nolan Ryan Field.
It was a bitter-sweet victory for the Javelinas. Even with the win in the finale, they still lost the series 3-1 as the Wildcats picked up a 12-6 come from behind win on Friday, March 22 and carried that momentum into the next day snagging both wins in the double-header 3-2 and 4-0 on Saturday, March 23.
“We came in here wanting to win the series like we do every weekend. That’s our goal, but you have to give them [ACU] a bunch of credit. They came in here played and just got a few more plays than we did,” said Head Coach Jason Gonzales.
With the 3-1 series loss, the Javelinas drop to 20-8 and 4-4 in conference play. The three losses the Hogs suffered this past weekend was the Javelinas’ first three game losing streak of the season. The streak was broken with the Hogs win in the series finale.
Abilene Christian would strike first in the game as they were able to pick up a run in the first inning with a single to center field to jump out to an early one run lead.
The Hogs would waste no time in responding as they took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the second inning as they loaded the bases with no outs.
James Black would ground into a double play with the bases loaded giving up two easy outs but also allowing Chris Ballou to score from third base.
With two outs in the inning, Juilan Duran would give the Hogs a lead as he rifled a shot back to the pitcher bouncing off his leg for an infield single allowing Matt Perez to score and give the Hogs the lead.
The Javelinas would be able to increase their lead to two runs in the fourth inning as Black would triple to deep left center field scoring Cash Barker to take 3-1 lead.
Abilene Christian would rally back to tie the game as the Hogs would give up two runs in the fifth inning thanks in part to a bases loaded sacrifice fly and throwing error by the Javelinas’ Matt Perez.
Neither team would be able to score again as the game would go in to extra innings with game tied at 3.
Taylor Taska(4-0) got out of a bases loaded jam in the top of the ninth on his way to picking up a win.
The Javelinas took a small ball apporach in the bottom on the inning as after a lead off single by Ballou, Mario Siller laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt to move the runner in to scoring position setting things up for Black’s walk off single to center field to end the game and give the Javelinas a 4-3 victory.
“I figured the pitcher would throw me a fastball, so I took a lefty mentality at the plate and just hooked it up the middle,” said third baseman James Black on his walk off hit.
The Javelinas will hope to carry momentum from this win as they gear up for a match up with the Tarleton State Texans on Thursday March 28 with a double header starting at 3p.m. at Nolan Ryan Field.
“We will contiue to work hard, we have a great group of guys, and as long as we continue to execute in games we are going to be ok,” said Gonzales.