ARLINGTON, Texas — Kadon Simmons and Jacob Moreland teamed up to scatter nine hits as Texas-Arlington defeated UL-Lafayette 4-1 in the opening game of a doubleheader Saturday afternoon at Clay Gould Ballpark.
The Ragin’ Cajuns bounced back, however, to take the second game 6-4 as Hunter Kasuls went 2-for-5 with a pair of runs scored and Kyle Clement went 3-for-5 with three RBIs.
In the first game, Simmons (8-3) picked up the win, limiting the Cajuns to one run on seven hits in seven innings.
Moreland recorded his third save of the year after closing out the game with two scoreless innings.
UL-Lafayette (28-16, 13-7 Sun Belt) picked up at least one hit in eight of nine innings but managed only one run on Alex Pinero’s sixth-inning sacrifice fly.
In the eighth inning, the Cajuns loaded the bases on two walks and a single with no outs. Steven Sensley hit a grounder to third baseman R.J. Williams, who threw home to force out Kyle Clement. Pinero then grounded to second base for a double play to end the at-bat.
It was UL-Lafayette’s third consecutive loss before the Cajuns rebounded to win the nightcap.
“When you are in what we are in, sometimes you can hit the ball well and not come away with the win,” UL-Lafayette coach Tony Robichaux said. “That’s why they call it a grind. You have to keep strapping your cleats on and get after it. We are living on the razor’s edge.
“Two flares shouldn’t do you in, but with our struggles hitting the ball it’s been costly for us.”
Sophomore left-hander Gunner Leger (5-3) was saddled with the loss after giving up three runs on seven hits. He walked three and struck out two in 5.2 innings.
Josh Minjarez had a game-high three hits for UTA (23-21, 9-11), which outhit the Cajuns 10-9. Brian Mills and Sensley led UL-Lafayette with two hits apiece.
Darien McLemore’s third-inning home run gave the Mavericks a 1-0 lead. After Pinero’s sacrifice fly tied the game, UTA quickly regained the lead. Quintin Rohrbaugh and Christian Hollie each had two-out RBI singles in the bottom of the sixth to make it 3-1.
Will Bacon relieved Leger after both sixth-inning runs had scored. With two men on base, Bacon struck out Cody Farrell to end the rally.
UTA tacked on an insurance run in the bottom of the eighth on a two-out RBI single up the middle by Minjarez.