ABILENE -- Senior lefthander Brady Rodriguez went seven strong innings Friday afternoon for his first win of the season to help the ACU Wildcats snap a nine-game losing streak with an 8-6 win over Stephen F. Austin in Southland Conference baseball action at Crutcher Scott Field.
The win pushes the Wildcats to 13-22 overall and 3-8 in the Southland, while the Lumberjacks fall to 16-22 and 7-10. The teams will conclude their series at 1 p.m. Saturday.
Rodriguez -- who picked up his 10th career victory in the ACU win -- scattered seven hits over seven strong innings and gave up just three runs and struck out five batters.
ACU got three runs in the first inning -- two coming in on a throwing error by SFA pitcher Dillon Mangham -- and single runs in the fifth and sixth innings to carry a 5-2 lead into the final three innings.
After SFA closed to within 5-3 with a run in the seventh, the Wildcats got two more in the seventh on back-to-back RBI singles from Heath Beasley and Colton hall, and then scored another in the bottom of the eighth on an RBI single by team RBI leader Brandon Grudzielanek to make it 8-3.
Kevin Sheets, who worked a clean eighth inning, ran into trouble in the ninth, loading the bases with two outs for Kyle Thornell, who promptly unloaded the bases with a three-run double to right-centerfield to make it an 8-6 game. But Sheets got Nick Ramos to ground out on a 1-1 pitch to end the game, preserving the win for ACU.
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