The Alcorn State Braves outlasted the Southern Jaguars to win 11-9 Sunday at Wesley Barrow Stadium. The Braves led almost throughout. The Jaguars kept clawing their way back into it, but ultimately ran out of innings. Southern dropped each game in the MLB Urban Invitational tournament, the only participating team to do so.
“We took a lot of bad at-bats. That lies with our seniors,” Jaguars coach Roger Cador said. “They took so many bad at-bats when they could have walked … and that’s an adjustment we’ll have to make. We can’t have that with the younger players because they may think that’s the way to play the game, and it’s certainly not.”
Though Southern outhit Alcorn 15 to 9, the Jaguars could not fully take advantage of their opportunities, leaving 10 runners on base, much like in their previous game against UNO. The Jaguars pitchers struggled to slow down the Braves’ bats. Freshmen starter Daniel Franklin labored through two and one-third innings while surrendering five runs before getting the hook. Southern also suffered plenty of self-inflicted wounds in the field by committing four errors.
“We made four errors and we walked a bunch of people, and they all came back (to haunt us),” Cador said. “Give Alcorn credit. They got the two out hits; they got the hits with runners on base. We weren’t able to capitalize on that.”
Despite all of their miscues, Southern hung in the game. But every time they pulled off a rally, Alcorn was able to hit them right back their next time up. The backbreaker came in the seventh inning with the Braves ahead 7-6. Devin Dukes smashed a triple to right center field with the bases loaded, and then Moses Charles plated him on an RBI groundout to give Alcorn an 11-6 lead, which proved to be too much for Southern to overcome.
Southern was able to creep within striking distance over their final three innings. They got the tying run to the plate with one out and a runner on second base in the ninth inning, but Pete Williams struck out in one of the bad at-bats Cador mentioned, and Marcus Tomlin grounded out to end the game.
“When you add all those things together, it’s a great formula for losing,” Cador said.
Southern will host Nicholls State Tuesday at 6 p.m. Tuesday.