Martinez, Gents rally to prevent sweep
Saturday, April 7, 2012

SHREVEPORT – Marc Martinez posted a 4-for-4, two RBI effort in game two while Kyle Morton drove in four runs as Centenary and UT-Tyler split Saturday’s American Southwest Conference doubleheader, 2-13, 12-5.

The Gents move to 21-9 and 14-6 in ASC play while UT-Tyler goes to 24-8 with the series win. UT-Tyler is the only club to take a three-game ASC series from Centenary this season. The Gents return to action next weekend with a three-game series at UT-Dallas starting Friday at 6 p.m.

Martinez led the 17-hit performance for Centenary with his outburst. Morton and Clakley added three hits apiece and Dan Lazarou and Jemari James had two hits each.

The Patriot offense didn’t slow down much, knocking 13 hits in the series finale after 18 in Saturday’s first game.

Grady Flournoy jumped to 2-0 on the mound after tossing 2 1/3 innings in relief, taking over for Nic Parrott, who threw 4 1/3 innings. He gave up four earned runs, five total, and scattered eight hits. Taylor Henry gave up just two hits and no runs in the final 2 1/3.

Matt Sheppard, the first of four UT-Tyler pitchers in game two, dropped to 7-4 after being knocked out after 3 2/3. The Gents knocked him around for six runs on nine hits.

UT-Tyler got on the board first in the night cap with a two-run Issac Tijerina double, his fourth and fifth RBIs of the day after three in the first game, but Centenary answered with a run off a Morton RBI single to right to score Creamer. Morton drove in his second run with a sacrifice fly in the third, scoring Ryan Gasporra to knot things at two before Jeff Schaffert smacked an RBI single to give the Gents their first lead of the series, 3-2.

The Patriots knotted the score at 3-3 after Martin reached on a Gents fielding error, followed by consecutive singles, but Creamer used a single through the right side to give Centenary a 4-3 lead in the fourth, scoring Dan Lazarou. Clakley and Morton followed with consecutive RBI singles to cap the three-run, five-hit frame and extended the lead to 6-3.

William Allen and Billy Lirely drove in two more runs for UTT to cut the Gents lead to 6-5, but Craig Littleman’s fifth-inning fielder’s choice moved the lead back to two runs at 7-5 after the fifth.

James and Martinez pounded back-to-back RBI hits in the sixth, giving Centenary a 9-5 lead. The Patriots loaded the bases in the top of the seventh, but Taylor Henry forced a flyout to center to end the inning and preserve the 9-5 cushion.

Morton smashed his team-high eighth homer in the eighth to put Centenary on top 10-5, and added an insurance run on a Martinez sacrifice fly. Lazaraou singled in James to finish the game’s scoring.

Tijerina gave the Patriots a 2-0 after the top half of the first of Saturday’s first game with a two-out, two-strike double to left field, just over the reach of Gasporra, scoring Aaron McCain and Allen.

McCain followed with an RBI single through the left side in the second to score David Ring, who used another two-out double to jump start the scoring. Jake Ashley punched another double over the head of Clakley to plate Ashley to give the Patriots a 4-0 advantage.

UT-Tyler used two Gents fielding errors to score two unearned runs off Cole Thompson to push the lead to 6-0. T.J. Martin (4-for-5, three RBIs in game one) used a two-RBI single to left to advance the margin before Ring drove in two more with a triple to the right-center gap and Jake Ashley singled to score Ring to jump ahead 9-0.

Schaffert broke up Blevins no-hit bid with a single through the left side in the bottom of the fourth, scoring Creamer, who walked to end Blevins perfect game. Jemari James reached on a fielding error, allowing Kyle Morton to score to slice the lead to 9-2.

The Patriots tacked on three more in the top of the seventh frame to finish the game’s scoring at 13-2.

Thompson dropped to 4-3 on the year after tossing just 2 1/3 innings, giving up six hits and seven runs, only three earned. Three relievers tossed the final 4 2/3 as Trey Guccione hurled 3 2/3 of them.

Michael Blevins improved to 3-1 after six innings of three-hit ball. He gave up both runs, just one earned before Parker Sheets gave up one hit in the final frame.