MOBILE, Ala. (4/13/14) – Zach Maggio’s double in the top of the ninth inning scored the go-ahead run as Arkansas State defeated South Alabama 3-2 in the series finale at Stanky Field Sunday afternoon.
Maggio’s double hugged the foul line in left field and was fair by a few inches and was enough to score Dustin Jones from first base for the team’s first lead of the afternoon. Jones, who reached on a hit-by-pitch earlier in the inning, was running on the play and Maggio produced the game-winning hit to give the Red Wolves’ (20-16, 10-5 Sun Belt Conference) their first series victory in South Alabama in school history.
Morgan Croft, who also picked up the save in Saturday night’s extra-inning victory, picked up his team leading seventh save of the year after putting the first two runners on in the bottom of the ninth, but battling back to the final three batters to preserve the victory.
Jones, the Red Wolves’ No. 9 hitter, tied the game in the seventh inning on RBI single off Hunter Soleymani. Jones stole second and then advanced to third on an Eric Wilcoxson groundout, but was left stranded on-base before he could score the go-ahead run.
Soleymani stymied the A-State offense for most of the day but ran into trouble in the seventh. Stuart Levy led off the inning with a single and Kaleb Brown provided and pinch-hit sacrifice bunt to move the A-State catcher into scoring position.
Bradley Wallace was charged with just two runs, eight hits, two walks and a season-high seven strikeouts in six innings of work. It was Wallace’s third straight quality start of the season helped spare the A-State bullpen which had worked 19.2 innings of the series’ first two games.
Wallace surrendered a run in the first inning on an RBI single to Justin Cullifer and then gave up an RBI double to Cole Gleason in the fifth inning that the Jaguars (16-19, 6-8) a 2-1 lead. The senior right-hander worked out of runners on the corner jam in the third inning and then gave up a leadoff double in the fourth but struck out back-to-back hitters and then got a groundout to get out of the inning.
A-State will end a stretch in which it will have played eight of nine games on the road Tuesday, April 15 for a midweek contest at Memphis. First-pitch is set for 6:30 p.m. and the game can be heard on 95.3FM The Ticket/970AM KNEA and in the StateZone at AStateRedWolves.com
For in-game updates follow @AStateGameDay on Twitter and stay up to date with A-State baseball by following the team on Twitter (@AStateBaseball) and Facebook (Facebook.com/RedWolvesbaseball).