Sun Belt Baseball Week 11

Only three weeks remain in the Sun Belt Conference season and a clear leader has emerged, yet everything else is still up for grabs after a weekend that saw three of five matchups go to Sunday rubber matches. The week finished setting up what may indeed be the deciding series for the regular season this week in Jonesboro.

While No. 2 Louisiana Lafayette has emerged as a clear favorite, a lot is left to be decided with only nine games remaining in the schedule. The Cajuns are the only team to have clinched a Sun Belt Conference berth at this point. Georgia State is the first team out, trailing eighth place Louisiana Monroe by only a game. If things fall right, Arkansas State and Texas State can both clinch Sun Belt tournament berths this weekend.

Don't forget to check out the Sun Belt standings at the bottom of the page along with updates to RPI and strength of schedule.

Sun Belt Weekly Awards

Player of the Week: UT Arlington's John Michael Twichell (Sr., OF) .417 AVG, 3 HR, 4 R, 4 RBI, 1.250 SLG

Pitcher of the Week: Western Kentucky's Justin Hageman (Sr., RHP) W, 1-0, 8.0 IP, 4 H, 3 BB, 7 K, 0.88 WHIP

Georgia State Takes Two-of-Three from A-State

ATLANTA, Ga. – Georgia State hit A-State pitching hard for a .301 AVG and a .443 slugging percentage in a series victory. Georgia State has moved out of the conference cellar at 7-14 with a 21-24 overall mark while A-State still holds on to second place at 14-7 with a 25-19 overall record.

Game 1 – Georgia State 5, A-State 1

Arkansas State's troubles against left-handed starting pitching continued Friday night as Georgia State's Kenny Anderson allowed an earned run over seven innings leading the Panthers to a 5-1 win over the Red Wolves. A-State scratched out a run in the third off of Matt Burgess RBI single after the Panther's Matt Rose hit a solo homer in the second.

Cody Woodhouse would surrender a two-run homer to Chris Triplett in the ninth as A-State's conference winning streak was snapped at five games.

Game 2 – Georgia State 7, A-State 6, 10 innings

A-State starter Bradley Wallace had a quality start allowing three earned runs over seven innings of work but it wasn't enough as Georgia State rallied for three runs in the last two innings and then won it with a walk-off single in the 10th to beat the Red Wolves 7-6. Wallace struck out five while allowing seven hits and no walks while holding the Panthers' offense in check.

Tyler Zuber allowed a run in the eighth and Morgan Croft surrendered two in the ninth to tie the game before Chandler Hawkins gave up the walk-off hit to David Levy in the 10th. Stuart Levy sent 2-for-5 with a run scored and two RBI to lead the Red Wolves.

Game 3 – A-State 10, Georgia State 6

A-State plated eight runs in the seventh inning to take a 10-4 lead and would go on to win the game 10-6 to avoid the sweep at the hands of Georgia State. Joe Schrimpf hit two singles in the inning with an RBI and two runs scored. Dustin Jones walked and hit a two-run triple and scored a run in the inning. Matt Burgess hit a two-run double, also in the seventh, as the Red Wolves sent 12 batter to the plate in the inning.

Nic Wilson hit his 13th homer of the season and Tyler Zuber recorded his first save on the year coming in to a bases loaded jam to close out the eighth inning and then the ninth for the Red Wolves win.

A-State Player of the Weekend: Dustin Jones (Sr., SS) 3-for-11, 2 3B, BB, R, 3 RBI, .272 AVG, .333 OBA, .636 SLG, .969 OPS

Other notables:

·         Joe Schrimpf (Fr., 3B) 4-for-9, 2B, 3 R, 2 RBI, .444 AVG, .444 OBA, .454 SLG, .898 OPS

·         Austin Baker (So., CF) 3-for-11, 2B, 2 BB, HBP, 3 R, 2 RBI, .272 AVG, .429 OBA, .545 SLG, .974 OPS

·         Stuart Levy (Jr., C) 3-for-11, 2B, 2 BB, 2 R, 3 RBI, .272 AVG, .385 OBA, .364 SLG, .749 OPS

A-State Pitcher of the Weekend: Bradley Wallace (Sr., RHP) ND, 7.0 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, 5 K, 1.00 WHIP

Other notables:

·         David Owen (So., RHP) L, 5-3, 5.2 IP, 5 H, 2 ER, BB, 6 K, 1.06 WHIP

·         Tyler Zuber (Fr., RHP) S, 1, 2.1 IP, 3 H, ER, 2 K, 1.29 WHIP

Friday Roundup: Austin Robichaux Back, Justin Hageman Dominant in Sun Belt Baseball

Saturday Roundup: Garrett Mattlage Hitting Keys Sun Belt Upset of Louisiana Lafayette

Sunday Roundup:

No. 2 Louisiana Lafayette Takes Two-of-Three from Texas State

Lafayette, La. – No. 2 Louisiana Lafayette had their hands full in this series but managed to win the series in a dogfight with Texas State. ULL continues to roll with a 39-6 record and 18-3 Sun Belt mark and Texas State fails to make up ground on A-State falling to 12-9 in the conference and 24-20 overall.

Game 1 – No. 2 Louisiana Lafayette 8, Texas State 6

Austin Robichaux made his first Friday Night start in three weeks and didn't last long, leaving after four innings having allowed three earned runs the offense would pick him up as Ryan Leonards hit an RBI triple to break a 6-6 tie in the seventh and Caleb Adams would drive him in with a single to give the Cajuns an 8-6 win. Texas State got a solo homer from Tyler Pearson and a two-run shot Granger Studdard. Seth Harrison hit a two-run homer for the Cajuns.

Game 2 – Texas State 10, No. 2 Louisiana Lafayette 3

Garrett Mattlage finishes a triple shy of the cycle as Texas State pounds out 15 hits in defeating ULL 10-3. Mattlage hit a two-run homer in the fifth as the Bobcats knocked Carson Baranik (8-1) from the game early, handing him his first loss on the year. Taylor Black (4-4) allowed two earned runs over eight innings of work to get the win. Corey Geisler also contributed a 2-run homer for the Bobcats while Caleb Adams hit a solo home run for the Cajuns.

Game 3 – No. 2 Louisiana Lafayette 2, Texas State 0

Cody Boutte and Ryan Wilson combine to shut out Texas State as No. 2 Louisiana Lafayette wins 2-0 clinching the series. Boutte threw six scoreless and Wilson closed out the final three as the Cajuns offense managed two runs, one on a fifth inning bases loaded walk and the other on a bases loaded sac bunt against Bobcats' starter Lucas Humpal. Texas State one-hit the Cajuns in the game.

Western Kentucky takes 2-of-3 against UALR

Bowling Green, Ky. – Western Kentucky continues to put pressure on the upper portion of the Sun Belt Conference with a two-games-to-one series win over UALR this weekend. The Hilltoppers are now 23-21 and 11-10 in the conference while UALR falls to 18-24 with a 6-15 Sun Belt mark now all alone in last place in the conference.

Game 1 – WKU 8, UALR 0

Justin Hageman improves to 5-1 on the year while striking out seven Trojans as WKU shuts out UALR 8-0. Regan Flaherty hit a three-run homer and Cody Wofford added a solo shot to pace the Hilltoppers' offense.

Game 2 – UALR 7, WKU 5

UALR gets two runs in the ninth inning to level series with WKU in a 7-5 win. Tanner Rock Well hit a two-run homer in the first inning and the Trojans overcame two solo home runs by WKU's Ryan Church to get the victory.

Game 3 – WKU 4, UALR 1

Phillip Deidrick hit a solo homer in the fourth inning to break a 1-1 tie in UALR's Cameron Allen (4-4) and Jake Thompson's (4-3) Sunday pitcher's duel. WKU closer Ian Thompkins notched his 11th save on the year.

UT Arlington Takes 2-of-3 against Troy

TROY, Ala. – UT Arlington gets back on the winning track in Sun Belt play winning the series with Troy two games to one. The Mavericks are pushing upward in the conference at 11-10 with a 20-24 overall record while Troy continues to struggle falling to 8-12 in the conference and 21-24 overall.

Game 1 – UTA 11, Troy 6

Derek Miller went 3-for-5 with a pair of doubles and four runs scored to lead the Mavericks offense that wasn't lacking in power to a 11-6 win over Troy. Eric Tate, John Michael Twichell and Darien McLemore each homered for the Mavericks while Nick Masonia launched one for Troy in the game.

Game 2 – Troy 11, UTA 8

David Hall had a monster day with a grand slam as part of a 4-for-5 effort with five RBI and three runs scored to lead Troy to an 11-8 win over UTA. Maverick's designated hitter Matt Shortall hit a three-run double and a two-run homer in a losing effort.

Game 3 – UTA 6, Troy 5

In a game that featured 31 hits, UTA defeats Troy 6-5 to take the series. John Michael Twichell hit his second homer of the series with a two-run shot in the fifth that followed Levi Scott's two-run triple as the Mavs plated four runs in the inning. Trevin Hall hit a solo home run and David Hall had a pair of RBI singles for Troy.

South Alabama Takes Two-of-Three from ULM

Mobile, Ala. – South Alabama took the first two games of the weekend series and nearly came from behind to steal game three against Louisiana Monroe but the Warhawks would avoid a sweep. South Alabama improves to 9-11 in the Sun Belt with a 19-24 overall record while ULM sits at 8-13 in the conference and 18-28 overall.

Game 1 – South Alabama 7, ULM 4

Locke St. John pitched well enough to win allowing 4 earned runs over 6.2 innings improving to 5-1 on the year as South Alabama beats ULM 7-4. Cole Gleason hit a two-run homer and the Jags piled up a four-run fourth inning. Dalton Herrington and Ross Moore each homered in the game for the Warhawks.

Game 2 – South Alabama 6, ULM 5

Cole Gleason leads South Alabama to a 6-5 win over ULM with a 3-for-4 performance that included a 3-run homer among his four RBI on the day. Kevin Hill got the win allowing three earned runs over 5.1 innings of work with six strike outs to improve to 3-5 on the year.

Game 3 – ULM 8, South Alabama 7, 11 innings

Pinch runner Anthony Herrera scored the game winning run on a fielding error giving ULM an 8-7 win in extras over South Alabama on Sunday to avoid a sweep. South Alabama erased a 7-4 deficit in the ninth to force extra innings. Justin Stawychny led ULM with a double and a pair each of runs scored and RBI in the win.

Sun Belt Conference Standings*






xNo. 2 Louisiana Lafayette





Arkansas State





Texas State










UT Arlington





South Alabama















Georgia State











*Rankings are from College Baseball Central rankings for the week of play

*RPI and SOS are from Warren Nolan.

xClinched berth in Sun Belt Tournament

Mark West covers the Sun Belt for College Baseball Central and you can read more of his college baseball coverage here.