GREENSBORO-The North Carolina A&T baseball team
struggled to get things going offensively on Sunday afternoon at War Memorial
Stadium, as the Marshall Thundering Herd swept the doubleheader to win the
series. The Herd won the first game 16-3
and defeated the Aggies 3-0 in the
"We didn't play well overall," said A&T head coach Joel
Sanchez. "It was a tough game one. We kept it together, and game two came out
again and it turned into a pitcher's duel."
A&T senior lefty Brent Moore and Marshall's lefty Wayland
Moore came out in control in Game 2.
A&T's Moore kept the Herd off the board in the first five
innings, retiring nine straight batters starting in the third inning. Marshall's Moore was just as effective, retiring
the first 13 batters he faced.
Aggie designated hitter junior Cameron Jergens broke up the
no-hit bid, the second on the day for the Herd, with a single to right field in
the fifth inning.
The Herd threatened in the top of the sixth, getting consecutive
singles with two out. But Moore got designated hitter Alfredo Brito to go down
swinging to get out of the frame. But he
had trouble getting out of the seventh inning unscathed. Marshall scored a run on an RBI double to center
field by second baseman Andrew Dundon. With
two on and one out, a two-RBI double to right by Gray Stafford made it a 3-0
"They finally broke through and got one key hit. We thought we were going to get out of the
jam with one run, but it kind of just floated over our right fielder's
head. They were three runs that held up. We couldn't put together a string of hits to
get back into the game," Sanchez said.
The Aggies started to rally in the eighth inning. Jergens and right fielder Reggie Washington
hit back-to-back singles to get the offense started. James Harris, who entered the game in the top of the inning
to play third, hit a sac bunt to advance both runners into scoring
position. But Herd reliever Kolin
Stanley struck out the next two batters to end the rally.
Reliever Tyler Boone, who entered the game in the seventh, retired
the Herd in order in the ninth to keep A&T within striking distance. Closer Matt Margaritonda came in for the save
attempt. With two out, second baseman
Luke Tendler walked to keep the A&T hopes alive. But first baseman Kelvin
Freeman grounded out to second to end the game.
"Boone was good again in the second game, and gave us a
chance to get back in it," Sanchez said.
"We didn't give him any run support, and we didn't play the best
defensive game behind him either. They
got to (Brent Moore) just the one inning, and that was it. So that's the Brent we were expecting. Hopefully we can give him better run support
in the next time out."
In the first game, Marshall put in a strong showing behind
starter Aaron Blair, who kept the Aggies hitless until the sixth inning. The Herd took a 3-0 lead in the fourth on an
RBI single by Stafford. But Marshall
opened up the game with a 5-run sixth inning off reliever Jamal Clark to take
an 8-0 lead.
"They had a very good pitcher on the mound. We had a tough time with him. He was throwing three, four pitches for
strikes and mixing it up and keeping us off balance for a majority of the
game," Sanchez said of Blair.
The Aggies will host Duke on Tuesday at 3 p.m. , and
Gardner-Webb on Wednesday at 3 p.m. at War Memorial Stadium before opening up
conference play at N.C. Central next weekend.