Prairie View completes sweep of Southern

Prairie View A&M used a six-run sixth inning to finish a weekend sweep of Southern with a 7-2 victory Sunday at Lee-Hines Field.

The first five Panthers reached in that inning, and all of them scored as they finally solved Jaguars starter J’Markus George (0-2).

“We walked the first guy, then all hell broke loose,” Southern coach Roger Cador said.

The Panthers improved to 10-12 and 6-5 in the Southwestern Athletic Conference. Southern, which visits Nicholls State on Tuesday, lost its seventh straight to fall to 4-16 and 1-9.

Jose De La Torre’s solo homer gave Southern a short-lived 2-1 lead in the fifth.

George held Prairie View to one run on three hits through five innings. After allowing a first-inning run with two outs, he retired 11 in a row.

“I just tried stay ahead of the hitters,” he said. “After the first inning, I made the adjustment I had to make, and I pounded the zone and kept throwing strikes.”

In the sixth, George walked Cody Den Beste leading off, and Jeff Sealy followed with a single. Dominiq Harris singled home Den Beste with the tying run, and the runners wound up at second and third after the throw to the plate.

Greg Salcido doubled home both runners, and Christian Krushall doubled home Salcido for a 5-2 lead.

George got Grant Dougherty to ground out for the first out, then was relieved by Jacob Polk, who walked Walter Wells and Colby Hines to load the bases.

Robert Cossey hit a drive to the warning track in right-center, and Lance Jones made a diving catch, but by the time he flipped the ball to right fielder D.J. Wallace and the ball was relayed home, two runs had scored on the sacrifice fly.

“D.J. let me know I had room, and I knew I had to dive, so I went all the way,” said Jones, who was playing with a sore right foot. “D.J. told me to flip it to him because he was already standing up. That was a crazy play.”

To make it even more unusual, Hines was thrown out trying to advance to second as the sacrifice fly became a double play.

“That was a first for me,” Cador said.

The Panthers took a 1-0 lead after two were out in the first as Sealy singled, Harris walked and Salcido singled.

Southern put the first two runners on in the first, but Jones was picked off second for the first out, and the threat fizzled.

“I made a mistake,” Jones said. “I need to be a smarter baseball player in that situation.”

Southern made another base-running mistake in the sixth when Phillip Williams was picked off first. He was caught leaning as he prepared to take off on a 3-2 pitch.

“He’s running, but he’s not stealing,” Cador said. “In his mind, he’s stealing rather than thinking, ‘I’m going after the pitcher releases the ball.’ ”

Southern tied the score in the third with a little help. With one out, De La Torre singled and Wallace walked. B.J. Rowry hit a grounder to third, and Salcido’s throw to second was wide, loading the bases. Robinson Mateo hit into a fielder’s choice at second, sending home De La Torre with the tying run.

Panthers starter Jonathan Mata (3-3) allowed just one earned run in six innings, and Jordan Stewart finished with three scoreless innings.

Polk threw 2.2 scoreless innings, and Rafael Diaz finished with a scoreless ninth.

“We haven’t been able to take advantage of opportunities to pitch with the lead, but (George) did very well up until then,” Cador said. “He was effective, but it was only for five innings.”