By: Tyler Hotz (Louisiana Tech Athletic Communications)
LAFAYETTE, La (KMSS/KTAL) – After combining to tally 31 hits between its first two games, Louisiana Tech’s bats went cold in a 2-0 defeat at UL-Lafayette on Tuesday night.
Tuesday’s matchup at Russo Park sped by with a running time of just two hours and 36 minutes as both of tonight’s starters delivered excellent outings. Tech starter Jarret Whorff pitched 5.1 innings of four-hit, one-run baseball with four strikeouts to get off to a strong start in 2021. Whorff’s run in the first inning was unearned following a pair of errors on Tech’s fielders.
Louisiana-Lafayette (3-1) starting pitcher Spencer Arrighetti shut down a red-hot Bulldogs’ lineup, working into the seventh inning with nine strikeouts while allowing just one hit. Ragin’ Cajun closer Brandon Talley notched his second save to secure the win for ULL.
“Arrighetti was good, and sometimes you’ve got to tip your hat to the opponent,” head coach Lane Burroughs said. “He controlled the game.
“I felt like we competed hard, but he was just overpowering tonight. There are a lot of positives to take from this, and I l thought Whorff obviously was outstanding. He gave us a great start, and Nick Ellis made his first appearance and faced two lefties and got them both out. Now we know what he can do. You have to prove it at this level, and he’s been doing that for us.”
LA Tech (1-2) pitchers allowed just seven hits and one earned run in Tuesday’s game. Junior Nick Ellis made his LA Tech debut on Tuesday, working out of a two-on, one-out situation in the bottom of the sixth. Ellis notched one of LA Tech’s three successful pickoff attempts to record the second out in the inning before getting a flyout to center field to end the threat.
Ellis gave way to reliever Cade Hodges in the seventh, who inherited a runner on third from Ellis following a leadoff double from Drake Osborn and a successful sacrifice bunt from Brett Borgogno. LA Tech brought the infield in to attempt to cut down Osborn at home plate, but ULL’s Bobby Lada singled up the middle to make it 2-0 Ragin’ Cajuns. Hodges proceeded to punch out the next two hitters swinging to conclude the inning.
Landon Tomkins delivered a scoreless frame in the eighth to keep the ‘Dogs within striking distance, but singles from Steele Netterville and Parker Bates in the ninth inning were not enough to spark a ninth-inning rally. Leadoff hitters reached base in the seventh and eighth for the Bulldogs but were quickly erased via ground ball double plays.
Following a fielding error from Netterville in right field in the first that allowed ULL’s first run to score, the senior hustled back to the right field wall to deliver a dart to second baseman Taylor Young, who fired toward catcher Kyle Hasler at home to cut down the UL-Lafayette runner at the plate. Netterville’s effort in the outfield went along with a 2-for-4 day at the dish for the Shreveport native.
Hasler also threw out UL-Lafayette designated hitter Ben Fitzgerald in the fourth at second base to thwart the leadoff batter’s stolen base attempt.
LA Tech will return to action on Friday as the Diamond Dogs open their new ballpark against Southern. Friday night’s matchup is set to begin at 6 p.m. J.C. Love Field at Pat Patterson Park will not allow fans for the opening weekend due to ongoing construction around the facility.
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