On a cold and windy Thursday night at the Bud Metheny Complex, Old Dominion baseball (22-16) began their three game set against the University of Texas San Antonio (26-12).
The impact of the cold weather was clear from the start as the monarchs did not play their usual mistake-free baseball, and couldn’t get their bats going like they have all season. UTSA shut out the Monarchs 5-0.
“It was a tough night to play. It was not going to be a good night to hit. We have gotten used to playing in warm weather and it certainly showed out there tonight,” Coach Chris Finwood said.
The team did not get off to the start they wanted, and shot themselves in the foot by making mistakes in the field.
“They scored their first run on a dropped ball in center. We had a chance to get out of the one inning and threw a ball away, [WE] couldn’t make the plays we needed to tonight and they made every play,” Finwood said.
ODU was still able to tally eight hits on offense. P.J. Higgins and Taylor Ostritch added two hits each but the Monarchs just missed some opportunities, leaving eight runners stranded on base throughout the game.
“On a day like this you just have to keep fighting. We had a couple chances with runners on first and second with two outs, we just couldn’t get the big hits. It’s unfortunate but that’s baseball. That’s just how it happens sometimes,” Finwood said.
The Monarchs’ pitching staff could have had a day as well. Andy Roberts took the mound for ODU (3-1) and only gave up two earned runs in six innings. The dagger came in the bottom of the sixth when the Road Runners put up three runs, scoring on two sacrifice bunts and a single.
“They did a great job executing a couple safety squeezes. That’s not an easy play by any means but they really executed them perfectly and that hurt us in the later stages of the game,” Finwood said.
ODU was able to muster a few singles in the eighth but unable to generate any runs. The Road Runners were able to add one more insurance run in the ninth and close out the victory.
The loss puts UTSA two games up on the Monarchs in the Conference USA standings and brings their in-conference record to 10-9.
“Losing a series opener, all you tell the team is let’s get back in this series. We didn’t play terrible tonight but it was their night and we have to put it behind us and come out of the gate strong for the rest of our series,” Finwood said.