LITTLE ROCK - Sophomore Bryson Thionnet ripped a two-out RBI single down the left field line to plate the go-ahead run in the bottom of the ninth inning, as UALR (9-3) scored three runs on three hits, all with two outs on the board, to defeat South Dakota State (0-7) 14-13 on Tuesday at Gary Hogan Field. The Trojans' put up 17 hits on the day and were led by senior Sean Bignall, who went 3-for-5 with a triple, three RBI and two runs scored.
Junior Myles Parma led all players with four runs scored on the day, and reached base four times on a hit, two drawn walks and an HBP. Junior Chris Burk went 3-for-4, while Thionnet ended the day with three hits as well, going 3-or-6 with two RBI and one run scored. Senior Nick Rountree had two hits, including his first home run of the season.
Austin Pfeiffer picked up the win for the Trojans to improve to 1-1 on the season after giving up one run on two hits in 1.0 innings of work. Shane Kraamer was saddled with the loss for the Jackrabbits, giving up four runs on seven hits in 2.1 innings on the hill.
Trailing 13-11 heading into their final set of at bats, Parma led off the bottom of the ninth with an HBP before two straight strikeouts had the Trojans down to their final out of the game. Parma reached second on a passed ball, and then moved to third on a stolen base. With Parma at third, Bignall ripped a two-out triple down the right field line to begin the UALR rally. A single by senior Greg Garcia plated Bignall to tie the game, and a walk issued to Rountree and a wild pitch put UALR base runners at second and third with Thionnet at the plate. The sophomore sent the second pitch he saw down the left field line to bring home Garcia and give UALR its first ninth-inning comeback victory of the season.
The two teams traded runs in their first set of at bats, with SDSU's run coming on a Zach Rhodes homer to lead off the game and UALR's coming when Parma scored from third on a throwing error by the Jackrabbit shortstop.
SDSU came back with three more runs in the top of the second, highlighted by another leadoff homer, this time by Daniel Telford, and an RBI double off the bat of Rhodes. The Trojans answered with four runs in the bottom of the third to give them a one run lead. RBI singles by Bignall, junior David Guarno and Thionnet combined with a sacrifice fly from Rountree to produce the four UALR runs in the frame and make it a 5-4 ballgame.
UALR added its sixth run in the bottom of the fourth on another RBI single by Bignall, while SDSU answered with a run of its own in the top of the fifth to again make it a one-run game, 6-5. The Trojans bounced back with two more in the bottom of the fifth thanks to one hit and a couple of errors by the Jackrabbits, but SDSU scored three in the bottom of the sixth to even the score at eight.
A two-RBI double by Rhodes in the top of the seventh brought in the first two in another three-run inning by SDSU in the top of the seventh and put them on top 11-8. UALR cut their deficit to one in the bottom half of the frame on a solo homer by Rountree and a RBI single by junior Chris Burk, making it 11-10 Jackrabbits.
The two teams traded runs in the eighth, while SDSU tacked on one more in the top of the ninth to give itself a two-run cushion heading into the bottom of the ninth.
UALR and SDSU will play the second of their two midweek games on Wednesday at Gary Hogan Field. First pitch is slated for 3 p.m.