JONESBORO, Ark. (5/18/23) – Hunter Draper and Arlon Butts combined to limit South Alabama to just two runs on Thursday night at Tomlinson Stadium-Kell Field to help the Arkansas State baseball team to a 7-2 series-opening victory.
Draper (1-3) worked the first 5 2/3 innings – tying his season best – and scattered seven hits with just one earned run allowed to earn his first career win. Butts entered with two on and two out in the sixth and fired the final 3 1/3 innings for his fourth save.
A-State (18-31, 7-19 SBC) tallied eight hits and took advantage of three errors. The Jaguars (23-29, 11-17) recorded nine hits, but left 11 men on base and hit 2-for-10 with runners in scoring position.
Brayden Caskey led the Red Wolves at the plate, going 3-for-4 with an RBI, while Wil French went 2-for-5 with a run scored. Blake Burris and Brandon Hager scored twice apiece, while Kody Darcy drove in a pair of runs.
After Draper worked a quick top of the first, A-State loaded the bases with two outs before USA starter Leif Moore walked in a pair of runs to take an early 2-0 lead. Moore (3-2) took the loss, allowing three runs on two hits in just one inning pitched.
Micah Morgan put the visitors on the board in the top of the second, driving in JG Bell, but A-State answered in the bottom half when Cross Jumper scored on a double-play ball.
The Jaguars pulled within a run in the fourth inning when Bell scored on a single by Hunter Donaldson, who went a team-best 3-for-4 with an RBI.
A bases-loaded walk to Daedrick Cail in the fifth inning plated French before Caskey drove in Burris with a single. Darcy then reached on a fielder’s choice that allowed Hager to score, capping the three-run frame.
USA threatened in the sixth with two on and just one out, but Draper and Butts forced a pair of flyouts to preserve the shutout stanza.
Butts worked around a leadoff double in the seventh to work a scoreless inning, and then A-State added an insurance run after the stretch when Cail scored on an error. The righty from Cadiz, Ky., worked around a pair of base runners in both the eighth and ninth, shutting down the Jaguars for the save.
A-State seeks the series win against the Jaguars on Friday, with first pitch slated for 3 p.m. The game will be broadcasted live on ESPN+, with the radio broadcast carried on FM Newstalk 102.1 KBTM/AM 1230 in Jonesboro.
For the latest on A-State Baseball, follow the team by liking Arkansas State Baseball on Facebook, as well as following the team on Twitter (@AStateBaseball) and Instagram (astatebaseball).
Read the original here:
A-State Pitching Stifles Jaguars in Thursday Night Victory. Article may or may not reflect the views of KLEK 102.5 FM or The Voice of Arkansas Minority Advocacy Council