Grambling State Tigers Hold off Late MVSU Rally

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Grambling State Sports Information

NCAA DI/SWAC/Baseball

 

Grambling State Sports Information

 

GRAMBLING, La. – The Grambling State University baseball team plated four runs in the fourth inning and held off a late rally by Mississippi Valley State for a 9-7 victory on Tuesday night at Wilbert Ellis Field at R.W.E. Jones Park.

The victory by Grambling State moved Tigers head coach James Cooper within one win shy of 200 for his collegiate coaching career.

How It Happened
Grambling State (17-19) struck with one run in the bottom of the first inning as Drexler Macaay reached on a fielder’s choice and scored on an RBI double to the wall in right by Rafael Ramirez, III to give the Tigers an early 1-0 lead.

Mississippi Valley State (6-18) answered in the top of the second on a solo homer to left center by Jordan Sawyer, tying the game at 1.

The Tigers grabbed a 6-1 advantage with five runs on five hits in the bottom of the fourth.

Kevin Whitaker opened the frame with a base hit to left and advanced to second on a balk. Jahmoi Percival reached on an infield hit and Garrett Smith was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Warren Laster reached on an infield hit to plate Whitaker. With one down, Isaiah Torres doubled to center to score Percival and Smith. Richard Ortiz smacked a double hard off the wall in left to plate Laster and Torres.

The Delta Devils responded with a pair of runs to close the gap to 6-3 in the top half of the fifth.

Grambling State picked up two runs in the sixth to extend the lead to 8-3.

Torres singled to right and advanced to second and third after back-to-back walks to Macaay and Ortiz to load the bases. Ramirez drew a base on balls to plate Torres from third and Macaay scored on a fielder’s choice by Whitaker.

The Delta Devils got a three-run homer by Wendell Rieves to cut the deficit to 8-6 in the seventh.

The Tigers got a run back in the bottom half the frame when Laster was hit by a pitch and stole second. With two outs, Torres delivered a double to right center to plate Laster and give Grambling State a 9-6 lead.

A solo homer by Billy LeFlore in the ninth closed the gap to 9-7, but that would be as close as the Delta Devils would get.

Inside the Numbers
> Grambling State finished with eight runs on eight hits, committed one error and stranded 10 baserunners
Andy Escano started on the mound and did not figure into the decision. He gave up one run on three hits and fanned four
Isaiah Torres led the Tigers offense by going 4-for-5, with three RBIs and two runs scored
Kevin Whitaker, Jr. collected two hits, scored once and drove in one run
D’Quan MatthewsGrant Landry (2-1) and Ryan Evans (fifth save) worked in relief
> Mississippi Valley State finished with seven runs on 11 hits, committed one error and left eight on base
> Aaron Barkley paced the offense by going 3-for-5, with one run scored
> Gerald Pintarich started for the Delta Devils and lasted three innings. He surrendered one run on three hits and struck out one
> Jordan Sawyer, Antonio Walker, Marshall Parrish and Aaron Barkley pitched in relief.

Up Next
Grambling State steps back into Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) Western Division play this weekend at Arkansas-Pine Bluff. First pitch is set for 3 p.m. on Friday at the Torii Hunter Baseball Complex. The series concludes with a 2 p.m. game on Saturday and a 1 p.m. game on Easter Sunday.

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