Gents, YellowJackets split DH to close season
Friday, April 27, 2012

LONGVIEW, Texas – Tyler Clakley smashed a grand slam in the first game of Thursday’s doubleheader to highlight a 2-for-4, five-RBI performance to lead the Gents in game one’s win as Centenary and LeTourneau split Thursday’s baseball doubleheader 10-8, 6-11.

The Gents wrap up the season 24-15 and 17-10 in American Southwest Conference play while LeTourneau moves to 15-23 with the split.

Nic Parrott improved to 3-2 after tossing 5 2/3 innings in game one, allowing just three runs while fanning six batters. He scattered eight hits before three other Gents pitchers struggled to close the game, giving up five runs in the seventh. Lance Nugent tossed the final two outs to secure the win after Taylor Henry and Matt Posey combined for just two outs in the sixth and seventh innings.

Ryan Whitehead dropped to 4-6 after six innings. The Gents smacked the starter for nine runs, eight earned on eight hits. Ray Whitley threw the final inning, surrendering two hits on a single run, but walked two.

Centenary struck first with two in each of the first two innings, highlighted by Dan Lazarou’s two-run homer to left center, his second round-tripper of the season. That put the Gents on top 4-0 after Ryan Gasporra doubled to drive in Lazarou in the first inning, followed by a Clakley RBI groundout to cap the two-run first.

LeTourneau responded in the bottom of the second with a three-run frame to slice the lead to 4-3, but Marc Martinez knocked an RBI single to right to plate Clakley to push the lead to 5-3 in the sixth.

Clakley’s seventh-inning grand slam highlighted the five-run seventh inning as the Gents pulled away in the final frame to close the 10-8 game-one win. The four-run dinger was Clakley’s sixth homer of the year, totaling his 36th RBI.

The host YellowJackets equaled the Gents big seventh-inning with five of their own, but Nugent extinguished the late-game comeback bid.

Lazarou tallied the most hits for the Gents offense in game one with a 3-for-4, two-RBI effort, scoring all three times he was on base. Clakley posted the only other multi-hit performance with a 2-for-4, five-RBI showing, highlighted by the grand slam.

Centenary jumped on top again in the nightcap as Lazarou moved to 2-for-2 in the leadoff spot, taking advantage of head coach Mike Diaz’s lineup change. Lazarou moved to second on a Morton groundout and scored on another fielding YellowJacket fielding error. Gasporra stole second and third and gave the Gents a 2-0 lead after a wild pitch.

LeTourneau took advantage of three balks, two errors and three walks to score five runs on three hits in the bottom of the first to take a 5-2 lead. The Gents sliced it to 5-3 in the third as Littleman scored on a passed ball after drawing a leadoff walk. The YellowJackets moved the lead back to 6-3 with a single run in the third after a Jeff Schaffert throwing error to third base, the fifth Gents error in three innings.

Craig Littleman smacked his second homer of the year, a solo shot to left center, to pull within 6-4 in the fifth before Gasporra cranked his ninth homer, tying Kyle Morton for a team-best, bringing the Gents within 6-5 in the sixth.

LeTourneau tacked on five more in the sixth to move the lead to 11-5 heading into the final frame.

Lazarou knocked in one more run in the seventh, but that’s all the Gents would muster in the seventh, 11-6.

Travis Norris improved to 3-8 after 5 1/3 frames. He held the Gents offense to four hits, but Centenary plated five runs, four earned, against the starter. Jordan Price faced a batter in the sixth before Kirby Cantalamessa earned his seventh save with 1 2/3 frames.

Peyton Stover fell to 2-1 in the nightcap, failing to record an out in the start. He allowed four runs, just one earned and three walks. Kamden Haglund tossed two outs in the inning before Chase Clarke tossed the next 4 1/3 frames of six-hit ball, giving up four earned runs, five total. He fanned seven of his 20 batters faced. Trey Guccione tossed the last inning for Centenary.