Lopers Rally in Game 2, Tigers Rally in Game One|
Three different players had multi-RBI efforts to help Nebraska-Kearney beat Fort Hays State, 10-5, in the second game of a double header Wednesday evening in Kansas.
The Tigers (16-14, 12-13) took game one thanks to a run in the bottom of the seventh, 5-4.
To take three of four from Hays this season, UNK (16-14, 16-12) had to bounce back from a 4-0 deficit after an inning. Junior Alex Sosa (2-1) gave up five hits in the bottom of the first but then shut out the Tigers in five of the next six innings, allowing just four hits and a walk.
Colorado sophomore Ross Mortensen then came in and blanked Hays over the final two frames, recording three K’s along the way.
A balanced Loper offense scored in five different innings and featured 14 hits with junior third baseman Mike Kattula (2 for 4, two runs) and junior short stop Scott Jameson (2 for 4, three runs) providing some pop at the bottom of the lineup.
UNK’s first three hitters – sophomore catcher Max Ayoub, freshman right fielder Anthony Pacheco and senior 1b Brian Wuest – followed suit by knocking in a combined seven runs.
The tables were turned in the early game as the Lopers jumped out to a 4-1 lead after two innings. Five of UNK’s six hits came in a three-run second, including an RBI single from Pacheco.
Hays tied things with single runs in the third, fourth and sixth innings and then won the game in the seventh thanks to a walk, hit by pitch and single. Center fielder Clayton Garland (1 for 4, two RBI’s) had the game winner with Jesse Hart (2-1) allowing four earned in 6.2 innings.
Ayoub went 2 for 4 with two runs to pace the Lopers.
UNK hosts Upper Iowa in a four-game series this weekend.