NEW ORLEANS – The University of New Orleans baseball team continued its Southland Conference series against Abilene Christian on Saturday evening at Maestri Field at First NBC Ballpark, scoring a pair of runs in the opening inning and never trailing in a 12-6 victory to match the program record for the most wins against the Wildcats in a season with two.
Junior outfielder Jay Robinson led New Orleans (12-7, 2-3 Southland Conference) on offense with three hits, three runs scored and one RBI. Sophomore outfielder Orynn Veillon also had three hits while posting two RBI with both coming in the Privateers’ five-run fourth inning off one of his two doubles in the game.
“We hit better today,” head coach Blake Dean said. “We were smarter at the plate and were able to get big hits which resulted in runs.”
Senior infielder Aaron Palmer set the pace of the game early with a leadoff single in the bottom of the first. Junior infielder Owen Magee put the Privateers on the scoreboard in the opening inning with a single up the middle, scoring senior outfielder Dakota Dean and junior outfielder Tristan Clarke. Abilene Christian (9-9, 1-4 Southland Conference) cut the deficit in half in the third inning off an error by the Privateers. With no outs and a runner on second in the third, sophomore left handed pitcher Bryan Warzek struck out the ensuing Wildcat with the following two grounding out to end the frame.
The Privateers created separation in the fourth inning with five runs off five hits to make the score 7-1. Magee led things off with a walk, while a hard-hit double from Veillon brought Robinson and junior infielder Chase Crump home. Senior infielder Samuel Capielano sent Veillon home with a single up the middle, only staying on first for a moment as the first pitch to Dean in the ensuing at bat went into right field for a triple. Junior catcher John Cable ended the scoring with a single to right field, scoring junior infielder Dakota Phillips.
Following a run scored in the fifth for the home team, UNO added four more to the lead in the seventh. Palmer was responsible for half the runs, brining Robinson and Veillon home off a single to right center. Robinson and Dean got the other two RBI in the frame, scoring Crump and Palmer.
On the mound for the Privateers, Warzek threw seven innings with nine strikeouts while allowing one earned run and six hits. Senior right handed pitcher Hunter Medine and junior right handed pitcher William Griffin pitched the final two innings.
“[Warzek] has gotten a lot better this year,” Dean said. “He has gone from one of the league leaders in walks to one of the league leaders in strikeouts while having an ERA under 1.00. He has matured and his fastball is looking better and better every day.”
For ACU, Luis Trevino and Russell Crippen both recorded two hits, while Koby Claborn blasted a three-run home run in the eighth.
The conference series concludes on Sunday at 1 p.m. Following the weekend series, UNO hits the road for a six-game road swing, starting at Missouri State on Tuesday, Mar. 21. 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.