JONESBORO, ARK. (2/15/20) – –\ Behind seven strong innings from starting pitcher Zach Jackson, the Arkansas State baseball team evened its season-opening series with Stephen F. Austin on Thursday with a 3-0 victory at Tomlinson Stadium.
Jackson got some early run support as the Red Wolves (1-1) scored in each of the first two innings before adding one more in the fifth. A strong performance by A-State both on the mound and in the field were on display early as the Lumberjacks (1-1) were retired in order in four of the first five innings.
The Red Wolves finished the contest with seven hits, including solo home runs by both Liam Hicks and Ben Klutts. SFA scattered three hits over Jackson’s seven innings of action, while Kollin Stone earned the save by recording the final six outs on the mound.
Klutts gave A-State the early momentum with his solo shot in the first, and A-State added an unearned run in the second to push its advantage to 2-0. The game’s final run crossed the plate when Hicks blasted a shot that cleared the right-centerfield wall in the fifth.
SFA threated to cut into A-State’s lead in the top of the sixth with a pair of two-out-singles, but the Red Wolves were able to get out of the jam without any damage. They also had runners on second and third with just one out in the eighth, but right fielder Tyler Duncan came up with a big double play as he caught a fly ball and gunned the runner down at home.
The Lumberjacks stranded two more runners in the ninth and left seven men on base in comparison to just five for the Red Wolves.
Jackson finished his first start of the season with seven strikeouts and only one walk. In relief, Stone struck out one of the seven batters he faced.
The Red Wolves and Lumberjacks will close out the three-game series tomorrow at 1:00 p.m. at Tomlinson Stadium.
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