STERLINGTON – LSUS had its 25-game win streak stopped Monday in the semifinals of the Red River Athletic Conference baseball tournament and after dropping back-to-back games for the first time since early March, and was eliminated from the tourney at the Sterlington Sports Complex.
Houston-Victoria scored a 9-8 win over the Pilots in the semifinal game before rival LSUA took an 8-7 win in an elimination game that followed. The Generals’ win pits them against Houston-Victoria in today’s championship game.
While frustrating, the two losses Monday were not catastrophic for the Pilots. On the strength of its regular-season, LSUS will be a host in the opening-round of the NAIA National Tournament beginning next Monday. The NAIA will announce on Wednesday the teams that will play in the Shreveport bracket, with the survivor next week moving on to the NAIA World Series.
The Jaguars took advantage of a couple of infield errors to score five unearned runs in the third inning and take a 6-2 lead in the first game of the day.
LSUS (44-8) came back to tie the game 6-6 on a Ryan Major two-run single in the seventh inning. UHV seized the lead in the bottom of the seventh with a couple of runs and added a run in the eighth for a 9-6 lead going into the ninth.
The Pilots closed the gap to one run on a Carlos Pineyro two-run double. The Jaguars were able to get the final two outs to hold on for the upset win, evening their record at 25-25 on the season.
Major finished the game 3-for-5 with a triple. Eric Worden was 3-for-3 with two RBI, Zyon Avery had two doubles in four at bats and Ryan Davenport had a double for LSUS.
LSUA won its third elimination game in 24 hours, taking down the No. 2 ranked Pilots in the final Monday game that determined who would play in the championship.
The nightcap was a repeat of the earlier game as LSUA scored three runs in the seventh inning to go ahead 7-6 and scored the eventual game-winner in the eighth.
The Pilots got a lead-off home run from junior Miguel Vega to pull within a run at 8-7. But with runners on first and second and one out, the team’s top hitter, Major, grounded into a game-ending double play.
LSUS finished with 14 hits led by Christian Webb (3-for-5) and Josh Gibson (3-for-4, double). Major was 2-for-5, Vantrel Reed 2-for-4 and Trevor Burkhart had a double.