JONESBORO, Ark. (2/25/14) — Junior pitcher Tanner Gaines tossed 4 1/3 innings of relief as Arkansas State won its third straight game over Southeast Missouri State 8-3 Tuesday night in a midweek contest at Tomlinson Stadium.
Gaines came in of relief of Adam Grantham in the fourth inning and gave up just one run on four hits and struck out three to earn his first win in a Red Wolves uniform. Colton Kibler and Bryan Ayers combined to pitch the final 1 2/3 innings to help A-State win its third straight over the Redhawks.
Arkansas State (5-4) fell behind 2-0 after rough start to the game from Grantham, but plated a run in the bottom of the second inning on an RBI groundout from Lucas Feddersen to cut the deficit in half. In the bottom of the third inning, the Red Wolves took the lead for good when the squad scored three runs on one hit and one error to go up 4-2.
The inning began with a leadoff double from Austin Baker, who came around to score on a bases loaded walk from Derek Birginske. Stuart Levy, who reached on walk in the inning, scored on a Dustin Jones groundout and Matt Burgess scored the inning’s final run when Ty Michelotti reached an error that allowed Burgess to score from third.
A-State added another run in the bottom of the fifth when Feddersen drove in his second run of the night on an RBI single to push the advantage to 5-2. The junior transfer from Houston, Texas went 1-for-3 on the night with two RBIs and two walks, while also scoring three runs.
The Red Wolves broke the game open in the bottom of eighth inning thanks to a 2-run triple from Baker. The sophomore outfielder has two triples in his first nine games of the season, after collecting just one in all of 2013 and also stole his fifth base of the season to make him perfect on steal attempts. He finished the game 3-for-5 with two runs scores and two RBIs.
Baker later scored in the inning on an RBI single by Stuart Levy to plate the eighth A-State run of the night. The Red Wolves had 12 hits on the night and had the leadoff man reach base all but one inning.
After scoring two runs in the first inning, SEMO was held scoreless until the seventh inning when the Redhawks scored their only run of the night off Gaines. The right-hander from Baldwyn, Miss., has given up just two runs in 7.1 innings of work in relief on the year, while Kibler and Ayers each kept their ERAs at 0.00 on the season with perfect outings.
Arkansas State will embark its first road trip of the season it travels to Alabama-Birmingham for a three-game set with the Blazers. Friday’s contest is set for 4 p.m. with Saturday’s and Sunday’s each scheduled to begin at 1. All games can be heard on 95.3FM The Ticket/970AM KNEA and on 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).