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Cardinals battle elements to sweep UIW

Daniel Bowden on the field playing against University of Incarnate Word. Courtesy photo.
Daniel Bowden on the field playing against University of Incarnate Word. Courtesy photo.
Lamar University scored six runs in the third and got seven strong innings from starter Hunter Hesseltine to defeat UIW, 8-2, Sunday afternoon and sweep the series. The Cardinals improve to 34-8 on the season and remain in first place in the Southland standings with a 12-3 (.800) record.
Lamar scored 10 runs on 11 hits with the majority of its damage coming in the third inning. LU also plated a run in the fourth and one more in the eighth. UIW finished the day with 10 hits but could only manage two runs and was charged with a costly error.
River Orsak was one of three Cardinals to record multi-hit efforts Sunday. He went 3-for-5 with 2 doubles, 2 RBIs and a run scored. Jack Schell also went 3-for-5 at the plate with a run scored and Austin Roccaforte was 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored.
Even more impressive than his stats at the plate was Roccaforte's play in the field. He robbed UIW's Dalton Beck of extra innings when he chased down a line drive in the gap in right center diving at the last second to make the catch.
Hesseltine scattered seven hits over his 7.0 innings of work allowing just one second-inning run. He struck out five UIW batters with only one walk. He was one of two Cardinals to pitch Sunday as Peyton Havard threw the final two innings allowing an unearned run on three hits.
Similar to Saturday's contest that saw UIW take a 1-0 lead in the first inning, Lamar would answer but their response came a lot sooner on Sunday. The Cardinals scored six runs on five hits in their half of the third. With runners at second and third and just one out, Orsak hit his first of two doubles to score Dodge. Four pitches later Tanner Wilson would come around to score on a grounder to short.
Lamar again took advantage of some UIW miscues as the very next pitch sailed wide of the catcher easily scoring Orsak. The next three Cardinals saw LU record two doubles and a single and then the plate started to jump around on UIW as two Cardinals walked and one was hit allowing three more runners to cross home.
Lamar led 6-1 and never looked back extending its lead to seven before San Antonio's version of the Cardinals tacked on an unearned run in the ninth.
Big Red remains at home but steps away from conference play Wednesday when they host Rice. The game against the Owls is set for a 6 p.m. first pitch and will be streamed live on ESPN+.
Category: Sports