Patriots steal game one from Gents
Saturday, April 7, 2012

SHREVEPORT – Ryan Gasporra posted a 2-for-4 showing with two doubles, but the Gents offense couldn’t keep up with UT-Tyler’s potent attack as the visiting Patriots stole game one of the American Southwest Conference series at Shehee Stadium Friday night, 7-2.

The Patriots improve to 23-7 on the season, dropping the Gents to 20-8. The series will conclude with a Saturday doubleheader starting at 1 p.m.

Senior hurler Lance Nugent picked up his first loss of the season, falling to 6-1. He allowed four runs, three earned, in five innings, scattering seven hits. Taylor Henry tossed an inning before Nic Parrott threw the final three of one-hit ball.

UT-Tyler’s Jack Barkley (8-0) stayed perfect on the mound after his seven-inning effort. He allowed both runs, but only one was earned. He gave up five hits before being relieved by Jacob Yanker, who gave up two hits and no runs in two innings of work.

Gasporra and Tyler Clakley, both 2-for-4, were the only Gents with multiple hits while five Patriots pounded at least two.

UT-Tyler used two two-out hits in the first to get on the board first, started by a single through the right side by Hayden Chick. William Allen smacked a double that caromed off the center field wall to score Chick from first to give the Patriots a 1-0 lead.

Clakley squared the score at one against his hometown school with a single up the middle, plating Matt Creamer, who led off with a double down the left line and move to third on a Gasporra flyout.

David Ring put the Patriots back on top in the second with a two-out single to right, scoring Billy Lirely, who reached on a leadoff walk, the only walk Nugent surrendered. Jake Ashley gave the Patriots a 3-1 lead after reaching on an error and scored on a triple down the left line by Issac Tijerina.

After a scoreless fourth, Allen used another two-out base knock to give UT-Tyler a 4-1 lead in the fifth, scoring Aaron McCain, who singled to start the inning. Ring followed with an RBI single through the left side to push the lead to 5-1 in the sixth. The Patriots took advantage of two leadoff walks by Henry in relief and plated two more in the sixth to move the lead to 7-1 after 5 1/2 innings.

Centenary slimmed the lead to 7-2 in the bottom of the sixth on a failed pickoff attempt by Chick, UT-Tyler’s catcher, moving Clakley home from second.

It seemed as though Gasporra jumped started an eighth-inning rally with a leadoff double to left center, but was thrown out on at third trying for a triple on a call head coach Mike Diaz emphatically disputed.

The Patriots stifled the Gents bats, holding the powerful offense to just two runs, one earned, and six hits in the nine-inning contest compared to UT-Tyler’s 13 base knocks.