Last Modified: Thursday, May 23, 2013 6:50 PM
SUGAR LAND, Texas — Things fizzled fast for McNeese State after a promising start to what ended up being the season’s final game.
Lamar piled on 10 unanswered runs after the Cowboys led off with three in the top of the first inning for a 10-3 elimination-game victory at the Southland Conference tournament.
The Cowboys (23-31) knocked Lamar starter Will Hibbs out of the game after just 1/3 inning, but had no answer for reliever Lance Warren (3-2), who allowed three hits over the final 8 2/3 innings.
Meanwhile, McNeese starter Bryce Kingsley (8-6) did not have the stuff that made him the SouthlandF reshman of the Year, allowing nine runs (seven earned) on eight hits and three walks in 3 2/3 innings.
“It was a tough start there in the beginning for us after taking a 3-0 lead and then not being able to hold it,” said McNeese coach Terry Burrows. “Give their pitcher credit though, he threw a great game. Bryce threw well all season and I know that wasn’t the way he wanted to end his season, but I feel confident in him and that he will come back stronger next year.”
The Cowboys took an early lead in the first inning, which was led off by a Andrew Guillotte hit by pitch.
First baseman Chayse Marion was walked on the next play, positioning runners at first and second, while designated hitter Michael Sullivan delivered a single through the left side that allowed Guillotte to score and give McNeese a 1-0 lead.
A Lamar error allowed third baseman Taylor Drake to reach base while Marion scored the second run of the inning. The Cowboys extended their lead to 3-0 as right fielder Skylar Barrentine’s sacrifice fly drove in Sullivan.
The Cardinals (37-19) bounced back in the bottom of the inning after receiving RBI contributions from first baseman Brad Picha and center fielder Garret Autrey, whose two-run single tied the game.
Lamar took the lead in the third with a rip down the left field line from second baseman V.J. Bunner, then added two more runs thanks to a pair of errors by shortstop Connor Lloyd. Lamar led 6-3 at that point.
Bunner delivered another RBI hit in the fourth inning, scoring Olivas to put the Cardinals ahead 7-3. A few plays later, Autrey doubled to left-center sending in two runs to extend Lamar’s lead to a 9-3.
A run from Olivas in the sixth inning extended the Cardinals lead to a 10-3.
Jacob Williams was brought in to relieve Kingsley in the fourth inning and pitched 2 1/3 innings, allowing one run on four hits. Senior Trey McGee tossed the last two innings, surrendering just one hit and no runs.
McNeese designated hitter Michael Sullivan had two hits and an RBI to pace the Cowboys, who managed only four hits in the game.