AUSTIN – Miscues doomed the Southwestern University baseball team on Saturday as the Pirates dropped both games of a double-header to Concordia, 11-2 and 10-5 at Tornado Field.
The loss saw the Pirates fall to 0-3 on the young season as the transfer heavy Tornados improved to 2-0 in their season opener.
In game one the Tornados exploded for seven runs in the bottom of the sixth to break open the game and take an 11-2 win.
Both teams starting pitchers were solid as Jason Stading scattered six hits in 3.1 innings, however Cameron Cox outdueled the senior going 4.2 innings and striking out eight Pirates. After Stading, Southwestern used four pitchers in relief but couldn't find the right mix.
The Pirates battled back to tie the game in the top of the fourth inning as Clayton Sparks stole second and third before he scored on a Tornado error that allowed Ben Little to reach. Sparks finished 2-for-3 as Southwestern stole four bases in the first game.
Southwestern scored its first run on a Charlie St. Clair RBI ground out. St. Clair finished 1-for-4 and picked up the only RBI for the Pirates as their second run was unearned.
Concordia was paced by Estevan Hernandez who drilled a bases loaded triple to leftfield in the sixth inning.
Game two saw more offense from both teams combining for 19 hits, however walks proved costly in the night cap for Southwestern.
Concordia would take the lead in the bottom of the third inning on a RBI single and a stolen base.
However, Southwestern continued to show resilience pushing back ahead in the top of the fourth. The inning started with a Zach Lynch single that scored one batter later on a double from Clayton Sparks. Sparks was 2-for-5 in the second game and added a stolen base finishing with three on the afternoon.
It looked as if the Pirates would break the game open as a Jake Pawelek single, Marsh walk, and Will Cates walk loaded the bases. Cates earned an RBI on his walk as Drew Fleischman reached on a fielder's choice, but failing to push runners home proved costly as Southwestern left 11 runners on base and seven in the first game.
Concordia would take advantage where the Pirates could not as five walks and two errors helped aid in a six run fourth inning for the Tornados.
The Pirates again made a push in the top of the sixth inning when Pawelek reached on an error to lead off the inning and scored on a Will Burks single. Two batters later Fleischman recorded his only RBI of the afternoon pushing Pawelek home.
Shea's second RBI came with the bases loaded in the sixth on a fielder's choice up the middle. From there the Pirate rally was halted as the Tornados again got solid pitching in relief.
Brett Marcom was handed the loss as he was tagged with six runs in 3.1 innings of work, while Ty Bratton picked up the win. Marcom finished with five of the Pirates seven strikeouts in game two.
Southwestern and Concordia finish the series Sunday at Tornado Field with first pitch set for 1 p.m.