GREENSBORO-The defensive woes for the North Carolina A&T baseball team continued on Saturday, as the Aggies dropped both ends of a doubleheader against Binghamton, 9-6 and 9-4.
A&T will host Binghamton for the series finale at 1 p.m. on Sunday. The game will be streamed online at www.ncataggies.com. Fans can watch the game for free.
The Aggies (4-10) committed eight errors on the day. The Aggies had to work from behind in each game, and weren't able to successfully complete their late rally in the end of either seven-inning game against the Bearcats (7-4).
"We struggled again defensively," said A&T head coach Joel Sanchez. "It's tough to win when you're playing behind all of the time."
The Aggies did have some strong individual performances at the plate on Saturday. Junior second baseman Luke Tendler extended his hitting streak to seven games, by going a combined 4-for-7 with three doubles and three RBI. His hitting streak matches Cameron Jergens for the longest hitting streak by an A&T player this season. Jergens also batted a combined 4-for-7 with a double. Junior catcher Stefan Jordan went 3-for-3 with a double, an RBI and two runs in Game 1 for the Aggies.
In Game 1, the Bearcats took a 5-0 lead on three A&T errors in the first inning. In the bottom of the second, senior right fielder Reggie Washington led things off with a double to right field. He scored on an RBI single by Jordan. Shortstop Jeovanny Tolentino followed Jordan on base with a single. With two on and two out, Tendler stepped up and slammed an RBI double to right field to make it a 5-2 game. Center fielder Dylan Hipp came up to bat, representing the tying run, but flew out to end the frame.
Binghamton added to its lead, pulling ahead by five runs through the top of the fourth. But the Aggies responded. Jordan led off the fourth with a double to left. He scored on an RBI double to right by Tendler. Hipp hit a single to shallow center field, to bring home Tendler and make it 7-4.
With two out, the Bearcats brought home two runs on a double to right by first baseman Jordon Smucker in the top of the sixth. A&T scored two runs to pull within three in their half of the sixth.
In the bottom of the seventh, the Aggies got runners on first and second with two out. Sophomore Brandon Wilkerson, representing the tying run, came to the plate. During his at-bat, Sanchez was ejected for arguing with the home plate umpire on catcher's interference. Wilkerson grounded out to first base to end the game.
Binghamton took an early 5-0 lead again in the second game. Jergens singled to bring home the first A&T run in the bottom of the third. Justin Godette replaced Tyler Boone, who made his first start of the season, after 3.2 innings. He gave up an RBI single to left fielder Jake Thomas to make it 6-1.
The Aggies scored two in the bottom of the fifth to pull within 6-3. Hipp scored as Tendler reached on an error by first baseman Brian Ruby. Jergens hit an RBI single to right to score Kelvin Freeman, who reached first after being hit by a pitch.
The Bearcats plated three runs in the ninth. In the bottom of the seventh, third baseman Justin Harris scored as shortstop Jeovanny Tolentino grounded out. Pinch hitter Darrin Meaders was hit by a pitch and he advanced to second as pinch hitter Brandon Wilkerson reached on an error. A single by Jergens loaded the bases with two out for the Aggies to help keep the rally alive. But left fielder Dairio Little flew out to end the game.