GRAMBLING, La. (March 25, 2014) – Senior Taylor Burch was a perfect 4-for-4 at the plate with a home run to help lead Louisiana Tech (9-14) to 4-3 win over Grambling State (6-18) two sweep the season series, 2-0, Tuesday night at Wilbert Ellis Field at R.W.E. Jones Park.
With the game knotted at 3-3 after seven innings, Louisiana Tech loaded the bases to bring up Taylor Love, who hit a sacrifice fly to score Tyler Ervine from third and give the Bulldogs a 4-3 lead heading to the ninth.
Freshman right-hander Braden Bristo (1-0) picked up his first collegiate win for LA Tech after coming on in relief in the sixth inning. Bristo gave up just two hits in 1.1 innings of work, while striking out one to earn the victory for the Bulldogs. Laetten Galbraith earned his first save of the season after facing five batters in the final inning and giving up one hit.
Austin Greer started on the mound for Tech and gave up one run on five hits in three innings. Eric Dunbar pitched a perfect fourth inning, but Grambling scored two runs in the bottom of the fifth off Bulldog reliever Luke Giddens to tie the game at 3-3. Jared Keating pitched an inning and a third before making way for Bristo in the sixth, while Phil Maton struck out two batters in the eighth to set up Galbraith for the save.
Grambling’s Brock Baker (0-4) was charged with the loss after allowing the fourth run of the game for Tech in the eighth. Baker gave up one run on two hits in 1.2 innings on the mound. Michael Martin started for the Tigers and gave up three runs on six hits in 4.2 innings.
Grambling State’s Roger Diaz doubled in the fourth inning, advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt and then scored on an RBI ground out by third baseman Cole Gray to make it 1-0 in favor of the Tigers.
The Tigers’ lead did not last long as Burch hit his first home run of the season down the left field line with a runner on in the top of the fifth inning for a 2-1 Tech lead. The Bulldogs added another run in the inning on an RBI single by Jacob Derouen to score Love from third, giving Tech a 3-1 advantage.
Grambling responded with two runs of their own in the bottom half of the fifth, starting with an RBI single by Juan Bueno. Yariel Medina tied the game with a one-out sacrifice fly ball to score Bueno.
Burch led the Bulldogs at the plate, totaling a career-high four hits, including a home run, two RBI and a run. Love put together a 2-for-3 effort with an RBI and run, extending his reached base streak to 21 consecutive games. Colby Johnson, Derouen and Ervine each had one base knock on the night.
Grambling had four players with multiple-hit games, with Diaz leading the way with a 3-for-5 night with a double and run scored. Kris Minter, Travaurs Bell and Medina each had two hits for Grambling in the loss.
Louisiana Tech had 10 total hits on the night compared to Grambling State’s 13 base knocks. The Bulldog pitching staff struck out seven Tiger batters, while not allowing a walk in the game.
The Bulldogs will hit the road tomorrow for a three-game Conference USA series against UTSA. The series begins at 6 p.m. Friday night at Roadrunner Field in San Antonio, Texas.