Blue Raiders Lose 8-7 After Ninth Inning Rally

ULM scores six runs to take win; MT plays 9 a.m. Thursday

May 21, 2008 · MT Media Relations
LAFAYETTE, La. - Middle Tennessee could not stop a ninth inning rally by ULM who scored six runs in the bottom of the ninth to take an 8-7 win on Wednesday afternoon.

ULM scored six runs on five hits for the win as senior Langdon Stanley allowed the hit to right field by Dexter Fontenot which scored both the tying and winning runs. The Warhawks began the inning on a sacrifice fly to centerfield by Collins which allowed Siggers to score from third. Then Prevost put ULM within two, 7-5, with his two-run double down the left field line. Suire doubled to left field making it a one run game as Prevost scored from third.

Stanley who fell to 3-3 allowed two runs on two hits after coming in with two outs in the ninth. Junior Brett Smalley was the first reliever brought in for the Blue Raiders. Smalley pitched one and one-third on an inning allowing four runs on three hits.

Sophomore Kenneth Roberts received the start on the mound as he allowed two runs on four hits in seven and one-third innings of work.

"He had thrown a lot of pitches and I thought it was time to go to the pen. The two guys who had been effective for us weren't very effective against Monroe. I thought they showed a lot of discipline against Brett Smalley and didn't chase anything. When I sent him out in the ninth he had a four run lead and you have to go after them. I thought we started melting after he hit the batter and then when we got to the middle of the order they have mentally tough hitters," head coach Steve Peterson said.

ULM's Jared Jennings received the start on the mound for ULM as he allowed five runs on seven hits in six innings of work. Fortenberry (3-1) took the win on the mound as he allowed no hits or runs in one inning of work.

Senior Zach Barrett and junior Grant Box helped guide the Blue Raiders at the plate as each went 3 for 5 with two RBI. Barrett had a home run while Box notched a double.

As a team, the Blue Raiders had 10 hits in the game with one double and two home runs but left a total of nine runners on base.

Middle Tennessee took a 2-0 on lead in the top of the third inning behind a long ball to left field by Barrett. The next batter, junior Rawley Bishop, hit one of his own out to right field extending the Blue Raider lead to three.

The last time the Blue Raiders hit back-to-back home runs was on May 2 against Troy when Hines and Barrett did it in the fifth inning.

Kyle Suire hit a solo home run in the bottom of the fourth to cut the Blue Raider lead to two.

Middle Tennessee added two runs taking a 5-2 lead behind a double down the left field line by Box in the top of the fifth.

Freshman Bryce Brentz added another run for the Blue Raiders with his single to left in the top of the seventh bringing in junior Nathan Hines from second, who reached on an error.

The Warhawks added their second run of the game in the eighth as Suire received a base on balls with the bases loaded from Smalley, who came to the mound in relief to make it a four-run game. Middle Tennessee would get out of the inning without allowing any more runs to score even though the bases were loaded as Dexter Fontenot hit a line drive to short stop freshman Tyler Burnett who flipped it to second baseman junior Taylor Dennis for the double play to end the inning.

Brentz reached on an error by the third baseman in the top of the ninth allowing Hines to score from second and extend the Blue Raider lead to five.

Middle Tennessee will be back in action on Thursday, May 22 when it faces Florida Atlantic at 9 a.m. in the loser's bracket of the 2008 Sun Belt Conference Tournament.

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