Wildness proved costly Friday night for the University of Houston-Victoria Jaguars as the Arlington Baptist Patriots rallied for a 6-5 win to spoil the Jaguars season opener at Riverside Stadium.
UHV pitchers issued 12 walks and hit two batters, including three walks and a hit batter in the crucial three-run ninth that lifted the Patriots to the victory.
A walk and hit batter accounted for two of the three runs despite the Jaguars out hitting the Patriot 10-8.
The Jaguars had one last opportunity in the bottom of the ninth as Derek Maciejeski (FR/Tomball, TX), who was 3-for-4, opened the inning with a single to left. Joshua Fonseca (SO/Pasadena, TX) put down a perfect bunt to move Maciejeski to second. After pinch-hitter Dalton Rodriguez (SR/Bay City, TX) lined out to left, Allen Westmoreland (SR/Pearland, TX), who was 2-for-4 with two RBIs, reached on a Patriots' error to put runners at first and third. The Patriots then intentionally walked Andrew Gross (SR/Alvin, TX) to load the bases and the move paid off as reliever Drake Boswell got Chase Tamez (SO/Cypress, TX) to ground to third to end the game.
The Patriots grabbed a 2-0 lead in the top of the third off two walks and a two-run, two-out triple by Kailan Glover.
The Jaguars struck right back in the bottom of the inning to take a 4-2 lead.
Maciejeski singled to left to open the inning and Fonseca walked. Nathaniel Pena (FR/Angleton, TX) moved the runners to second and third with a high-chopper ground out up the middle, before Westmoreland followed with a two-run single to left-center.
Gross, who set a new single-season home run record last season for the Jaguars, took up right where he left off as he unleashed a line-drive shot over the left-field fence for a two-run home run and a 4-2 lead.
Three more walks in the fourth led to another Patriots run behind an RBI single from James Duvall.
The Jaguars would get the run back in the fifth when Westmoreland tripled to deep center and Gross, who was 2-for-4 with three RBIs, singled to left to score Westmoreland.
The score remained at 5-3 until the ninth.
Ross Bludau (JR/Schulenburg, TX) started the game for the Jaguars and went 3.2 innings before giving way to Cesar Martinez Jr. (JR/Channelview, TX), who tossed 1.2 inning. Jacob Atkinson (SO/Harlingen, TX) replaced Martinez and worked three-plus innings and was tagged with the loss. Jacob Mihalski (JR/League City, TX) came on the Atkinson in the ninth.
The two teams return to Riverside Stadium on Saturday for a noon doubleheader.