Trojans leave seven runners stranded, fall to MTS, 8-4

Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 23, 2002

Adam Larson struck out 10 in seven innings as Middle Tennessee defeated Troy State, 8-4, at Riddle-Pace Field Saturday afternoon.

Larson (1-0), a transfer from Mississippi State, allowed 10 hits and three runs as he earned his first win of the season.

Troy State (6-6) out-hit the Blue Raiders 11-10, but left seven men on base, including two in the sixth and eighth innings.

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The Trojans struck first in the second inning when Collin Holder hit his second home run of the season to give Troy State a 1-0 advantage.

After a scoreless third inning, Middle Tennessee (2-1) scored six runs on six hits in the fourth to take a 6-1 lead. Six of the first seven batters reached base and scored via a double, four singles and a hit batter.

Troy State mounted a comeback in the sixth when it scored two runs on four consecutive hits with two outs in the inning. Wade Miller’s double scored Chad Howard and older brother Drew to cut the deficit to three, 6-3. The double also extended Miller’s hitting streak to 12 games, marking the longest skein at TSU in five seasons.

The Blue Raiders got the two runs back in the top of the seventh when Josh Archer hit a 2-run homer to left field off Trojan reliever Shawn Andrews.

Troy State added a run in the ninth when Al Stephens scored from third on Coby Smith’s fly out to left field.

Howard, Drew Miller and Stephens each finished with two hits for Troy State. Marcus Bell (1-3) was credited with the loss after allowing five runs on five hits while striking out three. Justin Morgan saw action out of the bullpen and pitched two innings of scoreless ball with one strike out.

Troy State and Middle Tennessee will play the rubber game of their series at 1 p.m. on Sunday at Riddle-Pace Field.

TSU 16, Middle Tennessee 6

Behind Lance Newman’s three hits, six RBI performance and Aaron Hunt’s six strikeouts in seven innings, the Troy State baseball team defeated Middle Tennessee, 16-6, at Riddle-Pace Field Friday night.

It was the second time in the last three games Newman has knocked in six for the Trojans. He set his career-high last Wednesday against McNeese State when he went 4-for-7. Newman also blew the game open in the fifth inning when he sent a Jeremy Armstrong pitch over the leftfield fence for his first career grand slam. With the Trojans ahead 11-4, Armstrong hung a 0-1 fastball that Newman delivered to the football tailgate area.

Troy State got a strong outing from Hunt, who was making his first start since lasting just two innings last Wednesday. The senior allowed four earned runs on eight hits while walking none. He improved to 2-1 on the season. His seven innings were a career-best.

Chad Howard led all players with four hits and added two RBIs and two runs for the Trojans. Brian Lipman finished with three hits and two RBIs and two runs as well.

For the second time in three games, Coby Smith opened the game with a solo home run for the Trojans. Newman was hit on the next pitch and advanced to third on Chad Howard’s double. Newman scored on Drew Miller’s groundout while Howard trotted home when Brian Lipman homered to left-center to give Troy State a 4-0 lead after one.

After the first two Trojan batters grounded out to start the second, Troy State scored two more on a hit batter and back-to-back doubles by Newman and Howard.

Middle Tennessee

scored a run in the third and fifth and two in the fourth to cut the Trojan lead to three, at 7-4. Then the onslaught began.

Troy State’s first 10 batters reached base to start the bottom of the fifth and seven runs scored before the Blue Raiders recorded their first out. Following Newman,s home run, Howard went deep on the next pitch for the first back-to-back home runs of the season for the Trojans.

Travis Horschel (0-1) lasted just two innings and allowed six earned runs on five hits. Marshal Nisbett went 3-for-5 with three RBIs and two runs for Middle Tennessee.