Above photo by Luke Zayas/True To The Cru
SAN ANTONIO- In the final non-conference game of the regular season, the UMHB baseball team went toe-to-toe with the nation’s No. 19 team on the road, but a late grand slam powered Trinity (TX) to a 7-3 victory on Tuesday night.
The Cru took the lead in the second inning, as Drake Herrera sent a hard-hit single into right field, scoring Staton Dudley from third base. But Trinity soon responded, using two hits, two walks and a hit-by-pitch, to push three runs across in the bottom half of the second.
Malek Bolin sliced into the lead five innings later, following up on a weekend that saw him hit the 26th and 27th homers of his collegiate career, with another home run. It made the score 3-2, as he took the first pitch he saw deep into the line of trees past the left field wall. Ryan Farmer followed suit one batter later, pulling Trinity reliever Alex Bihn’s two-strike pitch into left field for another homer, knotting the score at three apiece.
That same inning, the Tigers delivered a blow too difficult to counter, on one swing of the bat. Following a strikeout to begin the inning, consecutive singles and a hit-by-pitch loaded the bases with one out for Colt Harris, who left little doubt once he connected with Zack Honey’s side-arm delivered pitch. Honey’s 15th pitch of the night was sent well past the left field wall, a grand slam, putting Trinity up four, 7-3.
That was the final score, as consecutive strikeouts to Bolin and Warren Sammons in the ninth inning closed Trinity’s 21st win of the year. The Tigers are now 21-7 on the year, while UMHB drops to 17-13 overall.
Storylines throughout the contest
Herrera’s strong day at the plate: Herrera, UMHB’s starting left fielder, tied his season-high for hits in a single game, going 2-for-3 at the plate. Batting ninth in the order, following an 0-for-3 performance in his lone appearance in last weekend’s series against Concordia, Herrera was the lone Crusader with two hits in the game. He also recorded his first RBI since the March 29 win over Southwestern.
With the exception of a few pitches, the bullpen was consistent: After starter Zach Carroll went two innings with three earned runs on three hits and a trio of walks, five relievers took the mound for UMHB over the next six innings. Alex Palczweski fired two scoreless innings following Carroll’s exit, and Cameron Bogan struck out two in a scoreless fifth. Chris Dubois tallied two strikeouts in the ninth and did not allow a hit, the freshman’s third straight no-hit performance.
Bolin takes ASC HR lead: Bolin’s 11th home run of the season put the senior first baseman in the conference lead for home runs, breaking a tie with ETBU’s Jase Jones. He is hitting .395 this season, with 38 RBIs.
UMHB continues ASC play at LeTourneau, beginning with a 7 p.m. Thursday matchup in Longview. A doubleheader, beginning at 1 p.m. on Friday, will close the series.