SEGUIN, Texas – Facing the No. 5-ranked Division III team in the nation, the Southwestern University Pirates baseball team split its doubleheader against the Texas Lutheran University (TLU) Bulldogs on Friday night.
Game 1 – Southwestern 6, TLU 3
The Pirates got another complete-game victory from ace pitcher Austin Smith, who went all nine innings with 11 strikeouts to just two walks to remain undefeated at 5-0.
On offense, the Pirates got production throughout the lineup with 11 hits and a big, four-run second inning to give Smith the run support he needed.
Southwestern opened the top of the second with a Colby Schmidt getting hit by a pitch, followed by a Ethan Hallmark single to left field, moving Schmidt to third. After Seth Sparks grounded out, Ted Lobkowicz hit a RBI-single to center field from the eighth spot.
Chase Thinger drew a walk in the next at-bat to load the bases and Hallmark scored on a wild pitch. Hayden Craig grounded out to second in his second at-bat but scored Lobkowicz. Daniel Montgomery Jr. followed with a walk and Cole Kelly hit a RBI-double to left-center to give the Pirates a 4-0 lead.
Southwestern added an insurance run in the fourth with a solo blast to right field by Daniel Montgomery for his eighth home run of the season.
Texas Lutheran put its first three hitters on in the bottom of the fifth with a walk, hit by pitch, and bunt single. After Smith struck out Chad Curtis, Joe Jimenez put the Bulldogs on the board with a RBI-single to right field. Austin Colon followed with a RBI-single to center field and Thomas Varner had a RBI on a fielder's choice, scoring Spencer Brandt to cut the Pirate lead to 5-3.
Kelly added another run in the top of the sixth, hitting a two-out RBI-single to center field to score Craig, who reached on a walk.
Smith struck out two of three in the bottom of the sixth and seventh innings and left two stranded in the eighth before striking out two of three in the ninth for the win.
Game 2 – Southwestern 2, TLU 9
The Texas Lutheran Bulldogs responded with nine runs off 13 hits in Game 2, holding the Pirates to just two runs in the sixth inning and nine hits for the game.
TLU starting pitcher Nathan Malinovsky pitched all nine innings, striking out 13 of the 36 batters he faced with one walk to pick up his fourth victory of the season. Southwestern starting pitcher Benjamin Ludwig went 3.1 innings, giving up four runs on four hits with four walks and three strikeouts to pick up the loss, falling to 1-2 on the season.
Following the split, the Pirates are 16-10 with a 5-3 conference record. TLU is 20-8, including 5-3 in conference. With rain in the forecast on Saturday, both teams will conclude the three-game series on Sunday with the game starting at 4:00 p.m.