CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (ASU) – The Arkansas State baseball rallied from a six-run deficit and held on late behind strong relief outings by Chandler Hawkins and Adam Grantham to defeat Southeast Missouri 12-10 Tuesday night at Capaha Field.
Grantham earned his first save of the season after striking out a career-high eight in the final four innings of the game after entering the game with a bases loaded, no out jam in the sixth inning. Grantham struck out the first seven batters he faced and got Garrett Gandolfo, who represented the winning run, to fly out to end the game.
Hawkins (2-5) allowed just two runs on five in three innings of work after entering the game for Bo Ritter who gave up three solo home runs to the RedHawks in two innings of work.
A-State took the lead in the fifth inning when Joe Schrimpf belted his second home run of the run of the year with a 3-run blast to left centerfield to put A-State ahead 7-6. The inning started with Tanner Ring drawing a leadoff walk and Massanelli was hit by a pitch to put two runners on ahead of Scrhimpf.
The inning continued with a pair of singles by Ty White and Jeremy Brown and the Red Wolves' loaded the bases when Lovell was hit by a pitch to bring up Zach George. A wild pitch allowed White to score to make a two-run lead for Arkansas State.
Following the wild pitch, the RedHawks attempted to give George an intentional pass to first, but the next pitch by Wesley Pyles sailed high and Brown attempted to score from third but was thrown out at home for the second out of the inning. George walked and Burgess grounded out to end the inning but not before A-State plated four runs on three hits to take its first lead of the night.
SEMO scored a run a in the bottom of the fifth inning to cut the A-State lead to 8-7, but the Red Wolves posted three runs in the top of the sixth to push its advantage to 11-7. White drove in a run with a sacrifice fly to make it a 2-run game and Lovell followed with a 2-run single to make it a four-run advantage.
The RedHawks plated a run in the bottom half of the sixth inning to get within three, but Burgess led off the seventh inning with a solo home run off the scoreboard in leftfield to extend his hitting to a team-high 12 games and put A-State up 12-10.
SEMO scored two runs in the eighth inning, the first two allowed by Grantham, and had runners on first and second with two outs in the bottom of the ninth before Grantham got the final out of the to secure the victory.
The RedHawks jumped out in front in the second inning with a pair of solo home runs by Dalton Hewitt and Branden Boggetto and a 2-out RBI double by Trevor Ezell. Hewitt led off the inning with a solo blast to right field, while Boggetto's blast sailed over the wall in leftfield. Ezell followed with his RBI hit to plate Clayton Evans and give SEMO an early three run lead.
SEMO added to its lead with three more runs in the third inning thanks to a solo home run by Garrett Gandolfo to start the inning. Scott Mitchell drove in another run on an RBI double that chased Bo Ritter from the game after just 2-plus innings of work. Chandler Hawkins entered the game with runners on second and third with no out and allowed just one to run to cross home plate on a groundball out to limit the damage to just three runs in the inning.
Arkansas State responded with a four-run rally in the top half of the fourth inning that spurred with a 1-out solo home run by Collin Massanelli. The Red Wolves scored the final three runs of the inning with two outs, two which scored when Daltan Lovell ripped an RBI single to right field that got by Hewitt and allowed another run to score. Lovell, who made the first start of his career behind the plate, scored on a base by Austin Baker to cut the deficit 6-4 after 3 ½ innings.
Massanelli's home run was the fifth of his career and his first since 2012 when he had three in a game against UALR.
George extended the nation's longest on-base streak to 43 games with a 1-out double in the top of the first inning, but the senior third baseman was left stranded as the Red Wolves failed to capitalize on the scoring opportunity.
Schrimpf finished the night 2-for-4 with three RBIs, while Lovell went 2-for-4 with three RBIs. Ring, Massanelli and White also finished with two hits each.
A-State returns to the diamond Wednesday afternoon at Tomlinson Stadium for a non-conference clash with Tennessee. First-pitch is set for 5 p.m.
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