Blue Raiders even series with 12-6 win vs. UL-Lafayette
Robinson improves to 2-0 as starterMarch 17, 2007 · MT Media Relations
Robinson (2-0) continued an impressive start to his Blue Raider career by notching his second win as a starter and holding the Ragin' Cajun hitters at bay through five scoreless innings. Louisiana-Lafayette (15-4, 4-1) finally got to Robinson with a two-out grand slam off the bat of first baseman Justin Robichauex, and he gave way to the bullpen, after 5-2/3 innings.
While Robinson continued to deal on the mound, Blue Raider hitters continued to swing the bats well as Wayne Kendrick led an 11-hit attack with a 3-for-4 performance. Kendrick also scored four runs. Zach Barrett (2-for-4, 1 run scored, 1 RBI), and Drew Robertson (2-for-4) also had multi-hit games. Rawley Bishop and Adam Warren were also solid in the middle of the order four RBIs and four run scored between them.
Middle Tennessee (9-11, 3-2) pulled to within one game of the Sun Belt lead early in the race by dealing the Cajuns their first league loss in five games. Robinson worked the first six innings, allowing four runs on five hits, and striking out five. He pitched out of key situations in the third and fourth innings without allowing a run after the Cajuns had put runners in scoring position with less than two outs. Unfortunately, for Robinson, he couldn't do the same in the sixth.
The Cajuns mounted another threat in the seventh when relief pitcher Nick Marrs walked the first two batters he faced but then coaxed a ground ball and the middle infield combination of Wayne Kendrick and Taylor Dennis made the turn. The Cajuns managed to get a run out of the frame with a two-out infield hit, but Josh Anderson came out of the pen to get pinch-hitter Scott Hawkins to fly out and end the inning with the Blue Raiders clinging to a 6-5 advantage.
Middle Tennessee erupted for a four-run first off Cajun lefty John Zorich with Rawley Bishop and Adam Warren collecting the key hits. Bishop's one-out single plated Dennis, and Warren followed with a two-run triple down the left-field line to send two more base runners plateward. Warren scored when Zach Barrett reached on a fielding error to give the Blue Raiders the early 4-0 lead. Zorich was pulled after the second inning, allowing five runs, three earned, on three hits.
The Blue Raiders tacked on another run in the second when Robertson scored on third baseman Tim Santiago's second error of the game. Middle Tennessee extended the lead to 6-0 in the fifth when Kendrick doubled, went to third on a wild pitch, and scored on Barrett's fielder's choice.
That's when the Cajuns began to mount their late-inning rally, coming up with five runs in the sixth and seventh innings to make a strong push and put the pressure on the Blue Raider bullpen.
Middle Tennessee took advantage of Louisiana-Lafayette's shaky play in the bottom of the seventh when it came away with four runs on just one hit. Three walks and a fielding error proved costly when Blake McDade unloaded a two-run double to deep center.
Leading 10-5 in the top of the eighth, Middle Tennessee made it interesting again when three straight Cajuns reached, two via walks, after Anderson had successfully got the first two Cajuns. Brett Reilley came on and got an immediate break when he uncorked a wild pitch but Robertson pounced on the ball and made a perfect throw to Reilley covering the plate to nail the runner for the final out of the frame.
The Blue Raiders would add two more runs in the bottom of the eighth on their way to evening the series. Brett Smalley will take the mound Sunday as the Blue Raiders go for the series run. First pitch at Reese Smith Field is 1 p.m.
Follow the Blue Raiders on Twitter @MTAthletics for continued updates.
More Baseball NewsMay 21, 2013: Stephens, Thomas earn All-Sun Belt Team accolades
May 18, 2013: Blue Raiders end season with loss to WKU
May 17, 2013: Blue Raiders drop 8-2 decision to Hilltoppers
May 16, 2013: Miller, Ford homer in loss to WKU
May 15, 2013: Blue Raiders host WKU for regular-season finale beginning Thursday
May 12, 2013: MT walks off with victory in 10th to clinch series over ULM