LAFAYETTE, La. (4/13/16) – Bradey Welsh held Louisiana in check for 7 2/3 innings, but the Arkansas State offense failed to find a way to string together hits as the Red Wolves as the dropped the series opener to the Ragin’ Cajuns 8-0 at M.L. “Tigue” Moore Field Thursday evening.
Welsh pitched well through seven innings and surrendered just three runs, all earned, while striking out three and issuing just three walks. The only trouble he ran into was in the first inning when Louisiana scored two runs and in the fifth when they scored again after Welsh allowed the first two batters of the inning to reach. He also worked out of a jam in the seventh inning UL had runners on the corners with 2 out, but Welsh induced a groundout to the shortstop to keep the Red Wolves within striking distance.
He ran into trouble in the eighth inning, however after issuing a leadoff double, but then got the next batter out before a bizarre scenario unfolded with Brad Antchak and Joe Schrimpf at first base. Antchak laid down a sacrifice bunt that was fielded by Schrimpf who appeared to tag out Antchak, but the first base umpire ruled Schrimpf missed the tag and all runners were safe.
Welsh responded with a fly out on the next pitch, but then gave up a two-run single to end his night at 7 2/3 innings and 123 pitches. Chase Nix relieved Welsh in the eighth and gave up a two-run double and an RBI single to add to the five-run inning for Louisiana. Seven of the eight runs on the night were charged to Welsh, but four came in his final inning of work and all after the bunt play at first base.
The Red Wolves had opportunities against Louisiana’s starting pitcher Gunner Leger, but failed to string together enough hits in crucial spots to push across a run. A-State had runners in scoring position in each of the first four innings and had its best scoring chance in the top of the first inning when it had runners at the corners with two outs.
The Red Wolves had another runner reach third base in the third inning, but Leger got Justin Felix to fly out to the warning track in left field to end the inning.
The Ragin’ Cajuns struck first with a pair of runs in the bottom of the first inning after a hit and run took Jeremy Brown out of position at second base to put runners on the corners. Louisiana then scored when Steven Sensley reached on an error at shortstop and Kennon Fotenot followed with a single to plate the game’s first two runs.
Louisiana added to its lead in the fifth inning when Zach LaFleur singled to lead off the inning, stole second and advanced to third on a wild pitch to setup an RBI sacrifice fly by Joe Robbins to push the lead to 3-0.
Game two of the series will be Friday night at “Tigue” Moore Field with first pitch set for 6 p.m. The game be heard on 95.3FM The Ticket and online at AStateRedWolves.com
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