A-State baseball swept at App State
On Sunday at Jim and Bettie Smith Stadium, the Arkansas State baseball team dropped a 16-4 decision in seven innings to Appalachian State.
A-State (17-31, 6-19 SBC) took an early 2-0 lead in the series finale, but the Mountaineers (26-21, 15-11) exploded for eight unanswered and then ended the game in the bottom of the seventh with an eight-run outburst.
Blake Burris and Brandon Hager combined for four of the Red Wolves’ seven hits, hitting back-to-back home runs in the top of the first. Burris scored twice, while Hager drove in two runs and extended his on-base streak to 39 games.
Tyler Jeans (2-5) drew the start and struck out five batters in 3 1/3 innings before Michael Finan cooled off the App State offense with 2 2/3 shutout innings, allowing just one hit. Four other A-State pitchers saw the mound in the contest.
The Mountaineers tallied 12 hits, led by CJ Boyd’s 4-for-5 day. Boyd homered twice and doubled, while scoring four times and driving in four runs. Andrew Terrell reached base four times and scored three runs, recording four RBIs.
App State starter Caleb Cross (5-3) pitched six innings and allowed two runs on six hits, walking four batters. Seth Whitley and Skylar Brooks combined to pitch the seventh, with Whitley surrendering two runs on three walks and a hit.
Burris’ and Hager’s back-to-back blasts put the Scarlet and Black ahead 2-0 after the top of the first. It marked the Red Wolves’ first game this season with back-to-back homers, while Hager moved up to fifth in single-season school history with 13 homers on the year.
Boyd’s first homer cut the lead in half in the bottom of the first, and then the hosts pushed across three runs in the second to lead 4-2.
In the bottom of the fourth, Boyd belted a two-run round tripper to make it 6-2 before a two-run double by Dylan Rogers made it 8-2 after four.
A-State trimmed the margin in half with two runs in the top of the seventh when Wil French touched home on a wild pitch, followed by Burris scoring on a base hit by Hager.
The Mountaineers then surged for eight two-out runs in the bottom of the seventh to end the contest. Boyd scored on a wild pitch ahead of back-to-back bases-loaded walks made it 11-4. Another run scored when Jonathan Xuereb was hit by pitch with the bases full before Terrell hit a grand slam to left center, ending the contest.
Arkansas State returns home to conclude the regular season, hosting South Alabama in a three-game set beginning Thursday. First pitch is slated for 6 p.m. both Thursday and Friday, while Saturday’s finale is slated for 1 p.m. All three games will be broadcasted on ESPN+, and the radio broadcasts can be heard on The Ticket Radio Network stations 95.3, 96.9 and 970 AM in Jonesboro, as well as online at 953theticket.com.
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