PUEBLO, Colo. (February 5, 2017) – Behind a strong start from Kyle Lazcano, Colorado State University-Pueblo Baseball bested Emporia State University 4-3 Sunday at Rawlings Field to earn their first win of the 2017 season. The ThunderWolves now stand 1-2 after their season opening series.
Lazcano (Sr., Anaheim Hills, Calif.) quieted the Hornets potent offense in his first start of the season. The righty allowed just one run and six hits through six innings of work. He walked two and struck out three to earn the win.
Coming out of the bullpen, Colton Follett (Jr., Simi Valley, Calif.) closed the door on the Hornets to earn his first save. Follett threw three innings for the Pack giving up two runs on two hits with four walks. After allowing 10 extra base hits Saturday, Lazcano and Follett did not surrender any extra base knocks.
Brandon Castaneda (Jr., Azusa, Calif.) led the Pack's offense with a 2-for-4 day. He also drove in a run and scored for CSU-Pueblo.
The Pack got on the board first. Zach Hoffman (Jr., South Jordan, Utah) led off the second inning with a single. He would come around on a Castaneda ground out to give the Pack a 1-0 lead.
Emporia evened it up in the fourth. This would be the only run surrendered by Lazcano. With two on and one out, Lazcano worked his way out of danger, getting the last two batters of the inning to keep the game tied at one.
CSU-Pueblo reclaimed the lead in the bottom of the fifth. Castaneda kicked off the inning with a single. He advanced to second on a bunt. Charles Steele (Jr., Encino, Calif.) was plunked giving the Pack runners at first and second. Derron Davis (Sr., Las Vegas, Nev.) slugged a base knocked up the middle to drive in Castaneda. Steele came around on a Jake Boyd (Jr., Salt Lake City, Utah) sacrifice fly to make it a 3-1 lead.
The Hornets threatened in the sixth. After Lazcano struck out the first two batters, a pair of singles brought up the go-ahead run. Lazcano induced a ground ball out on his final pitch to escape the jam.
In the bottom of the sixth, the Pack tacked on a little insurance. Ambrose Romero (Jr., Albuquerque, N.M.) got things started with a single. After a groundout moved Romero into scoring position, Chris Devery (Jr., Saugus, Calif.) came through with a pinch hit knock that plated Romero. Devery's first hit with the Pack gave CSU-Pueblo a 4-1 lead.
Things would get interesting in the bottom of the ninth. Down to their final out, the Hornets scored two runs to close within one. With two runners on and a chance for Emporia State to take the lead, Follett struck out BJ Dean to seal the win for the Pack.
Follett finished with five strike outs in his first outing to earn the save. Jordan Plank took the loss for Emporia State surrendering three runs on four hits in 4.1 innings.
After avoiding the sweep against Emporia State, the Pack will keep their homestand going next weekend when they play University of Colorado Colorado Springs in a three-game non-conference series. The first meeting between the two Steel & Silver trophy rivals on the baseball diamond will take place Friday at 1 p.m. at Rawlings Field.
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As a member of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, Colorado State University – Pueblo competes in 22 varsity sports in NCAA Division II intercollegiate athletics.