Privateers hit four home runs against Bears
CONWAY, Arkansas – The University of New Orleans baseball team continued its Southland Conference series against the University of Central Arkansas on Saturday afternoon, besting the hosts 11-4 for the program’s first-ever victory at Bears Stadium.
New Orleans (14-10, 4-4 Southland Conference) hit four home runs in the victory, the third time the Privateers have hit four home runs in a game this season and just the second time ever in a Southland Conference contest. Junior outfielder Tristan Clarke paced the attack with three hits and two homers, with junior catcher John Cable and sophomore outfielder Orynn Veillon each chipping in home runs.
“We played with a more competitive attitude today,” Clarke said. “We knew the importance of rebounding from yesterday’s loss so we came out with a purpose. From the first pitch until the last our team was energized and we got the win.”
Clarke opened up the home run floodgates in the second frame, hitting a solo bomb to put UNO up 1-0. Central Arkansas (11-14, 2-6 Southland Conference) responded with three runs in the bottom half to take the 3-1 lead, adding a run in the fourth to create a three-run lead.
The Privateers took the lead in the sixth inning with five runs, loading the bases to open the frame with a single from senior infielder Dakota Dean and back-to-back hit batters for junior infielder Owen Magee and Cable. Clarke cut the deficit to two with a single through the right side to score Dean, with junior outfielder Chase Crump making it a one-run affair with a sacrifice fly to bring Magee home. Veillon gave New Orleans the lead with a three-run blast to score him, Clarke and Cable.
UNO’s offense carried over to the seventh stanza with four more runs, highlighted by a two-run homer from Cable followed by a second bomb from Clarke in back-to-back at bats. The Privateers ended the scoring in the eighth inning, with Palmer bringing Veillon home.
On the mound for UNO, sophomore Bryan Warzek went 5.2 innings, allowing four runs, two earned, with six strikeouts to pick up his fourth victory of the season. Freshman right handed pitcher Reeves Martin finished the final three and a third innings, allowing no runs while striking out three Bears for his first collegiate save.
For Central Arkansas, Jansen McCurdy, William Hancock and Brooks Balisterri all contributed two hits, with Keaton Presley providing both of the Bears’ RBI. Jacob Murray got the start for UCA, going five innings with four runs allowed and three strikeouts.
“We have to keep up the intensity and consistency,” Clarke said. “Not just through this weekend but for the rest of the season. When we play up to our potential we can compete with any team in the country, and we have shown it this season.”
The series rubber match between the Privateers and Central Arkansas is scheduled for Sunday, Mar. 26 at 1 p.m. New Orleans is back at Maestri Field on Friday, Mar. 31 when UNO hosts Texas A&M-Corpus Christi at 6:30 to start a Southland Conference series. For tickets to future Privateers athletic events, contact the UNO Athletics Ticket Office at (504) 280-GAME (4263) and season tickets can be purchased over the Internet by clicking HERE.