CANYON The UTPB Falcons saw their baseball season end Thursday with an 18-8 loss to Texas A&M-Kingsville in the first round of the Lone Star Conference Tournament at Wilder Park.
The Falcons (9-41) overcame an early 5-2 deficit to lead 8-6 in the sixth inning, but the Javelinas (37-13) scored the next 12 runs to defeat UTPB for the eighth time in nine meetings. Texas A&M-Kingsville scored five runs in the first, seven in the sixth and four in the eighth.
UTPB opened the game with back-to-back home runs by Chris Ortega and Mitchell Hazlett, and Mike Hernandez added a two-run blast in the third. Fernandez finished 3 for 5 with three RBIs, giving the Falcons a 7-6 lead in the sixth with a run-scoring single, while Hazlett was 2 for 4. Andrew Donovan was also 3 for 5 and Dalton Drury was 2 for 5 with a double and two RBIs.
Javelinas catcher Christian Caudle was 4 for 6 with two doubles and six RBIs. His two-run double in the sixth put Texas A&M-Kingsville in front to stay. Kohl Ullman, Manny Loredo, Dallas Stefano and Brad Jones each drove in two runs.
Lee May Gonzales (5-2), the fifth of six Javelina pitchers, worked 1.1 scoreless innings for the win. UTPB’s Owen Bessette (2-6) was charged with six runs on six hits in taking the loss.
The Javelinas will play Tarleton State at 3 p.m. Friday in the semifinals.
UTPB………….. 202 103 000 — 8 14 0
A&M-K’ville… 501 007 14x — 18 22 1
Andrew Loudermilk, Matt Williams (1), Owen Bessett (5), Cale Thornton (6), Matt Symczak (6), Ivan Thomas (8) and Mitchell Hazlett. Tyler Flores, Preston Plovanich (3), Garrett Alexander (6), Alex Canul (6), Lee May Gonzaez (6), Seth Hubert (8) and Christian Caudle. W — Gonzalez (5-2). L — Bessette (2-6). 2B — UTPB: Skyler Palermo, Dalton Drury; TAMUK: Manny Loredo, Caudle 2, Giancarlo Servin. HR — UTPB: Chris Ortega (4), Hazlett (2), Mike Fernandez (4).
Records — UTPB 9-41; Texas A&M-Kingsville 37-13.
Lone Star Conference Tournament
At Wilder Park, Canyon
GAME 1: Texas A&M-Kingsville 18, UTPB 8
GAME 2: Eastern New Mexico 7, Angelo State 4
GAME 3: Texas A&M-Kingsville (37-13) vs. Tarleton State (33-15), 3 p.m.
GAME 4: Eastern New Mexico (24-23) vs. West Texas A&M (38-11), 7 p.m.
GAME 5: Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner, 3 p.m.
NOTE: Tournament champion advances to NCAA Division II South Central Regional.