Aldridge’s hit keeps Statesmen alive
May 08, 2013 | 2148 views | 0 0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
CARROLLTON, Ga. - Tyler Aldridge hit a RBI single in the bottom of the 10th to score Jordan Chovanec from second to push the Delta State University Statesmen team past the University of West Florida 8-7 in an elimination game in the 2013 Gulf South Conference Championship Tournament Tuesday afternoon.

In the bottom of the 10th inning, Chovanec reached with a one-out single to put the potential winning run on second. It was the fourth straight at bat that Chovanec had reached base safely (three hits, one walk). After Chovanec advanced to second on a ground out by Sam Kidd, Aldridge put the Statesmen (40-8-1) into the next round with a single through the right side that allowed the speedy Chovanec to score.

Chovanec finished 3-of-5 with two runs scored and an RBI. The Inez, Texas native also had a walk. Aldridge finished 3-of-6 at the plate, with a run scored and the game-winning RBI.

The game went to extras as West Florida (35-12) scored three runs in the top of the ninth inning to tie the game at seven. Garrett Pickens entered the game with the bases loaded and one out. Pickens, who picked up the win in relief, struck out the next two batters to leave the inning tied.

Pickens improved to 3-0 on the season with 1.2 innings pitched, all five out coming by strikeout.

Colton Mitchell started the game for the Statesmen and pitched five innings. Mitchell gave up three runs on seven hits with two walks and two strikeouts. Ricky Winters pitched 3.1 innings of relief, giving up four runs on three hits and a walk with two strikeouts.

West Florida scored first in the game, using a two out rally to score a run in the top of the fourth inning with a single to take a 1-0 lead.

Delta State answered back and took the lead in the bottom of the fifth with three runs. Brent Langston started the inning with a single and Kasey Hinton followed it up with a double to deep center. With runners on second and third, Carlos Leal put the Statesmen in the lead with a double to right center. After a sacrifice bunt put Leal on third and Chovanec drew a walk, Kidd hit a sacrifice fly to score Leal.

The Argonauts answered back with three runs in the top of the sixth to retake the lead. West Florida used a lead off homer and a fielding mishap by Chovanec to score two more runs in the inning. On a ball hit to center field, Chovanec fell in wet conditions allowing a two-run triple to give the Argonauts back the lead.

In the seventh, Delta State answered back with another three run inning. Three straight singles by Chovanec, Kidd, and Aldridge loaded the bases. Ben Kingsley followed it up with a double down the left field line to score Chovanec and Kidd. Aldridge then scored on a wild pitch in the dirt that got by the West Florida catcher.

The Statesmen added a valuable insurance run in the eighth inning with a RBI single by Chovanec to score Hinton from third. Hinton reached with a lead off single and advanced with a sacrifice fly and a tag up on a fly out to right.

Following the eighth, West Florida used the three-run rally to tie the game and send it to extras.

The Tuesday afternoon game was the second straight extra-inning contest for the Statesmen. The Statesmen fell to Valdosta State in the bottom of the 10 inning on Friday, the last time the Statesmen played.

Delta State also defeated West Alabama today 10-0 in an elimination game. More information will be in tomorrow's edition of the Bolivar Commercial.