The Texas State baseball team ended its seven-game win streak Wednesday with a loss to Valparaiso 3-2 in the Bobcats’ fourth extra-innings game of the season.
“If you dwell on what you do well too long, it’ll pass you by,” said Coach Ty Harrington. “We are going to move on to Washington State. We still haven’t played good baseball yet, in my opinion, like I think we are capable of playing.”
Dylan Bien, freshman pitcher, took the mound against Valparaiso to make his second career start.
Bien pitched three innings, struck out one batter and kept the 2-1 lead in tact before leaving the game in the top of the 4th.
Texas State scored its first run on an error by Spencer Mahoney, Crusaders third baseman, followed by a wild pitch, putting two runs on the board for the Bobcats.
“When the opposing team makes four errors, it’s frustrating,” Harrington said. “All our guys are frustrated, too. We have won a lot of ball games late and had another chance tonight to do the same thing.”
The Crusaders committed four errors on the game and capitalized on Texas State’s five hits compared to Valparaiso’s seven.
Chad Young, junior reliever, stepped in for Bien and pitched two innings, striking out two batters and walking three. Young pitched a scoreless inning to hold the lead for Texas State 2-1.
Tyler Davenport, freshman pitcher, followed Young and tossed two-thirds of an inning, throwing walks to load the bases for the Crusaders.
Valparaiso had an opportunity to tie the game but could not capitalize with the bases loaded as Jeff Edward, Crusaders shortstop, grounded out to Austin O’Neal, senior first baseman.
The Texas State pitchers did not allow an earned run, relying on their bullpen early. The Bobcats played three relievers before the sixth inning and had six pitchers come out of the bullpen for the game.
“That was by design,” Harrington said. “It was a mid-week game, and we only have one day between games before we head to Washington State.”
David Paiz, junior third baseman, reached first on an error by the center fielder and advanced to second to start the bottom of the sixth.
O’Neal forced a walk to put a man on first, giving the Bobcats an opportunity to extend their 2-1 lead.
Colby Targun, junior outfielder, could not advance the runner from third as he grounded into a double play, ending the scoring opportunity for the Bobcats.
Grant Yoder, Valparaiso designated hitter, advanced the runner from second to tie the game at 2-2 on a contested play by Targun in the next half inning. Targun made a diving play but the umpire called it a trap play, continuing the top of the seventh.
Hunter Lemke, senior pitcher, entered the game in the ninth as the sixth pitcher of the night for the team. Lemke recorded three saves in three games prior to the game against Valparaiso.
“I was confident coming into this game,” Lemke said. “Groundballs just got through the infield. I’m a ground pitcher. That’s just baseball, and I’m going to always have confidence in my defense.”
Lemke allowed a double down the left field line in the top of the 10th, giving Valparaiso a 3-2 lead and the victory.
“We got to flush this loss,” Lemke said. “That’s baseball. Just flush the loss. That’s the way it goes. We have to look ahead to Washington State.”