EXTRA INNINGS TOO MUCH AS BASEBALL SKYHAWKS FALL TO BELMONT 9-8
March 25, 2018
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin baseball squad suffered 9-8 loss in 12 innings to Belmont this afternoon.
UT Martin (5-17, 2-7 OVC) was led by junior outfielder Jordan Stoner (two hits and two RBIs) and freshman first baseman Ethan Whitley (one hit and two RBIs). The duo of Collin Edwards and Casey Harford connected for an RBI each. Carson Shrode, Blake Davis and Anthony Adduci all tallied a hit apiece while Tyler Albright scored a game-high two runs while also drawing two walks.
Sam Folks drew the start today and tossed five innings while allowing six earned runs. He managed to fan four Bruins in his time on the mound. Austen Bullington produced a strong, four-inning outing from the bullpen as he allowed just one hit and rung up four Belmont batters along the way. David Hussey pitched 0.2 innings, allowing two earned runs in the process. Austin Buzick (0-1) was tagged with the loss as he tossed two innings and gave up the deciding run of the ballgame but fanned two in his outing.
Belmont jumped out to an early 1-0 lead as it was able to push a run across in the first inning but Folks ended the frame on a strikeout.
Folks made quick work of the Bruins in the second as he retired the side in order on a line out, a foul out and a fly out on 15 pitches.
Adduci tallied the first hit of the day for the Skyhawks in the third inning as he singled to left field but was unable to be plated.
Folks worked around a pair of singles to open the Belmont third as he forced a fielder’s choice, rung up a Bruin and found a friendly fly ball for an out.
Belmont tacked on two more runs in the fourth to take a 3-0 advantage before adding on three more in the fifth to push its lead out to 6-0. Folks would record a pair of strikeouts in the fifth, one looking and one swinging.
Bullington would come on in relief in the sixth inning and need 14 pitches to get through the frame while ending the inning via the punchout.
The Skyhawks fired back with a six-run barrage in the seventh as Shrode led off the frame with a single back to the pitcher. Albright then walked to put men on first and second before Ben Aslett grounded out to move both runners over. Edwards would draw a walk to load the bases just in time for Whitley’s two-run single to right center to plate Shrode and Albright while Edwards made his way to third. Next came a Davis single to load the bases. All runners would then move up a base and Edwards would come home on a wild pitch. Harford then singled, advancing to second on the throw while Whitley crossed home plate and Davis moved over to third. Finally, Stoner came up to the plate and ripped a single to left field to score both Harford and Davis to even things up 6-6.
Heading into the bottom of the ninth, Bullington made sure that the Skyhawks would keep playing baseball as he fanned a batter and sat down the side in order.
UT Martin put up a pair of runs in the top of the 10th as Stoner led off the frame with a single back to the shortstop. Later, Albright walked followed by Blake Williams being called on to pinch hit and drew a four-pitch walk to load the bases. Edwards fouled out but Stoner would come home and the runners would move up. The second run came on a wild pitch that allowed Albright to score and claim the first lead of the day for the Skyhawks, 8-6.
Belmont answered with two runs of its own in the home half of the 10th to knot things up at 8-8.
Buzick would enter the game in the 10th with two outs and get assistance from his backstop, Davis, to get out of the inning as he threw out a would-be base stealer. Buzick exhibited his poise in the 11th as he fanned the first Bruin he faced followed by a single but would force a fly out and ground out to end the inning unscathed.
The Skyhawks looked to get ahead in the 12th as, with two outs, both Albright and Williams were hit by pitches in order to put a pair of runners on but to no avail.
Belmont rallied for a run in the bottom of the 12th to take the series finale 9-8.
UT Martin returns to Skyhawk Field on Wednesday, March 28 for a matchup against regional rival Evansville. First pitch is slated for 6 p.m.