Baseball: Marks, Bacon propel Cajuns to SBC finals
Tim Buckley, The Advertiser, May 23, 2015
TROY, Ala. – Riding the pitching of Wyatt Marks, Will Bacon and Dylan Moore and the work behind the plate of Nick Thurman, the UL baseball team took two from Texas State on Saturday to advance to Sunday’s Sun Belt Conference title game.
The third-seeded Ragin’ Cajuns beat the sixth-seeded Bobcats 6-2 in an elimination game for both teams after beating them 3-0 earlier Saturday.
Moore closed both games to earn his 10th and 11th saves of the season, tying Matt Hicks’ 2013 school record.
Evan Powell took a bases-loaded, two-out walk to put UL up 1-0 in the first inning of the second game, and Stefan Trosclair scored when Nick Thurman reached on a bases-loaded fielder’s choice to make it 2-0.
Trosclair legged out an infield single, stole second second, advanced to third on a wild pitched and scored when Tyler Girouard reached on a fielder’s choice to put UL ahead 3-0 going to the bottom of the third.
Texas State got two back in the fifth, though, on back-to-back RBI shots to left by Cory Geisler and Cedric Vallieres.
Still a one-run game in the top of the eight, Thurman came up – 1-for-18 in the tourney at the time – and delivered a two-run double to right-center that scored Girouard and Powell and made it 5-2.
Texas State starter Lucas Humpal had exited just before the double, after throwing 126 pitches.
UL tacked on another run in the ninth, when Kyle Clement doubled and scored on Trosclair’s single.
UL went down in order in four of the first five innings thrown by Texas State starter Geisler in the first game, but the Cajuns took a 2-0 lead in the top of the fourth as Girouard doubled off the bottom of the wall in right to score Blake Trahan from second and Trosclair – who was hit by a pitch – came across on Powell’s sacrifice fly to left.
Trahan’s line drive over the second baseman’s head scored Greg Davis – who singled, moved to second on Joe Robbins’ sacrifice bunt and advanced to third on pinch-hitter Brian Mill’s sacrifice fly to centerfield – with an insurance run in the seventh.
Marks, meanwhile, had his slider working early – and throughout.
The St. Thomas More product had three strikeout outs in the first, was the beneficiary of double plays in second and third and retired the side in order in the fourth.
His defense provided a third double play to take out a leadoff runner in the fifth, and in the sixth Marks gave up a single but got three flyball outs.
He had two Ks around a walk and a groundout in the seventh, and exited only giving up a leadoff double in the eighth with UL up 3-0.
Marks was relieved by Moore, who promptly retired all six batters he faced in the eighth and ninth.
UL now faces No. 1 seed South Alabama’s in Sunday’s winner-take-all title game.