JONESBORO, Ark. (ASU) — Arkansas State erased a two run deficit in the bottom of the ninth inning, but Arkansas-Little Rock scored a run in the top of the tenth inning to defeat the Red Wolves 5-4 Friday night at Tomlinson Stadium.
Despite the loss, ASU secured a berth in next week's Sun Belt Conference Tournament by way of Middle Tennessee's loss to Western Kentucky on Friday night. ASU will be playing for the right to improve its seed in the conference tournament. If the Red Wolves defeat UALR tomorrow they will enter be the No. 7 seed, while a loss would make ASU the No. 8 seed.
ASU (26-28, 12-17 SBC) trailed 4-2 going into the ninth inning but the Red Wolves put together a one out rally to tie the game. Ryan Roberts started the rally with a single and Alex Potts reached on a walk to put the tying run on base. Dustin Jones delivered the tying hit with a two run double down the left field line.
ASU continued to put men on base in the inning and had the bases loaded with one out, but a strike out and a fly out brought the inning to a close.
UALR (27-26, 12-17) started the 10th inning with a leadoff walk to Myles Parma and Bryson Thionnet followed with an RBI double to give the Trojans the lead.
The Red Wolves used a two-run first inning to build an early lead. Logan Uxa drove in the first run of the inning on an RBI single through the right side. Collin Massanelli scored on the play after drawing a walk to lead off the inning and then advanced to second on a walk by Ryan Emery.
Stuart Levy followed Uxa's at bat with a sacrifice fly that scored Emery to make it a two run inning for A-State.
UALR starting pitcher faced just one more batter in the inning, surrendering a single to Ryan Roberts, and was lifted after getting just two outs. Saturday's probably starter Blake Huffman replaced McDonald and immediately gave up a walk to load the bases, but battled and got a ground out to get out of the inning.
Wallace was sharp through the game's first, three inning, but ran into trouble in the fourth inning. The junior right-hander surrendered a run in the fourth inning on an RBI single from Chris Burk and the Trojans tied the game in the sixth inning on a sacrifice fly by John Clark. Wallace a hit a batter, gave a up a single and threw a wild pitch in the inning before giving up the game tying run, but came back to strike out Burk and leave the go-ahead stranded on third base to end the inning.
Wallace threw six innings, gave up three runs on four hits and struck out four. He gave way to Seth McWilliams who went 2 1/3 innings and gave up a run, while David Owen threw the final 1 2/3 and gave up one run on two hits.
Jones finished the game 2-for-4 with two RBIs, while Roberts also had two hits on the night. Levy and Uxa each finished with an RBI.
Cody Woodhouse will get the call for A-State in the series finale on Saturday. The game will be broadcast by the Sun Belt Network on Cox Sports Television and Cox Sports South. The game will start at 4 p.m. and the Red Wolves will honor its 10 seniors before the game.