LSU with a late rally to beat Lamar Baseball
BEAUMONT – For the second time in as many seasons, the Lamar baseball team grabbed a first inning lead at Alex Box Stadium, but it wouldn’t last as the host LSU Tigers rode a late rally out to an 8-1 victory.
LSU, which is ranked in the top ten of three national polls, handed Lamar its first loss and improved to 5-3 vs. the Cardinals all-time. LU dropped to 4-1 this season, and LSU improved to 4-0.
Jayson McKinley was slated for the start, and the freshman couldn’t have asked for a better start, striking out the first batter he faced on three pitches and retiring the first five hitters of the game in order. The sixth, however, proved to be tough as JaCoby Jones uncorked a line-drive homer to left in the second inning.
“It just felt good to get out there and get it out of the way,” McKinley said of his collegiate debut. “It’s nice to get out there and get into the zone a little bit against LSU. I just left that one pitch a little bit up.”
The Friendswood native ended the game with three innings pitched, allowing three hits without a walk, and David Carver picked up where McKinley left off, pitching the next four frames and allowing just one run.
However, the rest of the staff was not as fortunate as Will Hibbs, Travis Moore and J.T. Autrey combined to allow six runs on six walks and a pair of hits in the eighth.
LU opened the scoring in unorthodox fashion after Jude Vidrine reached first base after striking out. The junior from Nederland took advantage of a passed ball by LSU catcher Tyler Moore, beating the throw to first base. Back-to-back walks by Brad Picha and Darian Johnson loaded the bases, and LSU third baseman Christian Ibarra committed an error on a Seth Dornak ground ball to bring Vidrine home.
Johnson led the LU offense on the night, going 2-for-3. Sam Bumpers, Aaron Olivas and Andrew Dewey also picked up hits, but the Cards were out-hit on the evening 9-5.
After Jones’ homer in the third, LSU grabbed its first lead in the sixth. Raph Rhymes, the 2012 SEC Player of the Year, got it going with a two-out single, and a Mason Katz double to right put the hosts ahead for good.
The Red and White will return to action on Friday with the start of the YMBL Cardinal Classic. Creighton and Washington will get things going at 2 p.m., and Lamar’s game against Creighton will follow at 6 p.m.
Tuesday, February 26 2013, 10:48 PM CST