The ACU baseball team travelled to Canyon with hopes of winning the Lone Star Conference tournament, but ended up going 1-2 over the weekend and falling short.
The Wildcats started off the tournament by playing Texas A&M Kingsville in the first round. The ACU offense got off to a hot start, scoring five unanswered runs to start the game.
From there, ACU got into a shootout with the Javelinas and gave up a couple of big innings, falling short 9-8.
“In the third inning gave up five runs and then in the fifth or sixth inning the put up a four spot,” head coach Britt Bonneau said. “The difference in that game was their reliever Cody Williams came in and put up a few zeros.”
Third basemen Kyle Guisti was the player of the game for the Wildcats, getting three hits and two runs. Kyle Conwell also had three RBIs.
The next day, ACU faced off against Incarnate Word in an elimination game and rose to the occasion with a 6-3 victory.
Pitcher Ty Taylor (6-4) threw 130 pitches in 8.2 innings to keep ACU’s season alive. Taylor punched out seven batters and only gave up two runs in the contest. Carter Hahn came in during the ninth inning and recorded a save.
“We knew we needed pitchers to go deep into games if we wanted to win this tournament and Taylor went into the ninth inning,” Bonneau said. “He gave us a dominating performance and never gave the other team a chance.”
ACU had multi-hit games from five players including Seth Spivey, Guisti, Tyler Eager, Chuck Dwarte and Ryan Luckie. ACU scored all six of their runs in the first three innings, but that was enough to conquer the Cardinals.
Sunday, the Wildcats faced off against the rival Angelo State Rams, but suffered a heart-breaking 4-3 loss.
ACU went into the last inning trailing by one run when Eager scored on a pass ball with two outs in the top of the ninth.
In the bottom of the inning, the Rams scored a run of their own to end the ACU’s season.
Eager had an outstanding game for ACU, getting three hits in the contest and scoring twice.
The Wildcats season ends with a record 29-25, which is an improvement upon last season when ACU finished below .500.
“From the start of the fall and all the way through the spring, I thought our guys played hard every game,” Bonneau said. “Our pitching kept us in a lot of games when we were struggling swinging the bat and our defense was solid all year. That is why we were able to beat two or three top 15 teams in the nation. We wanted to make it to regionals and do some other things, but overall I think we had a really good season.”