MARTIN, Tenn. - UT-Martin got a gem in the first game and held off a rally in the second game to take both ends of a doubleheader over the Butler baseball team on Saturday. UTM won the first game 5-0 before winning the nightcap 5-4.
Sophomore Marcos Calderon led Butler for the day with three hits and a run. Five other players had two hits on the day. Butler got two solid pitching starts from senior Mike Hernandez and Kyle Kramp, and senior lefty Brad Schnitzer threw two scoreless innings of relief.
BU fell victim to UTM's Alec Mills in the first game. Mills pitched 6.0 shutout innings and two Skyhawk relievers finished the shutout. The Bulldogs did have three more hits in the game (9-6), but couldn't find a timely hit to score a run. BU put a runner on third base in the 5th and 6th innings but did not score.
Hernandez kept the Bulldogs in the game, yielding four runs (three earned) over 6.0 innings. He only gave up four hits and one walk. It was his second quality start of the year in as many starts. He also pitched a solid game in BU's 3-0 win at Fresno State.
Butler took a 2-0 lead early in the top of the 2nd inning in the second game by taking advantage of a Skyhawk error. Senior Nick Hladek reached on an error and advanced to third on a double by junior Lucas Calderon. Freshman Austin Miller smacked a two-run double to give BU the early lead. UTM answered with a pair to tie the game in the bottom of the 2nd.
Marcos Calderon double and scored in the 3rd to put Butler ahead 3-2. He scored on a sac fly by junior Jimmy Risi.
Two Butler errors helped UT-Martin score a pair in the bottom of the 5th. The Skyhawks extended the lead to 5-3 with a run in the 7th inning.
Butler made it interesting in its last at-bat, as junior Bob Akin picked up a clutch RBI single to pull BU to within 5-4. The Bulldogs had the tying run in scoring position but ran out of outs.
Kramp gave a good outing, working 5.0 innings and allowing just two earned runs. He struck out six and walked one.
Butler (1-5) will finish the three-game series at UT-Martin Sunday, Feb. 26.