SAN ANTONIO – Starting pitcher Kevin Roy gave up just three hits and one earned run in 7.2 innings and left fielder Robb Paller drove in a pair of runs to lead Columbia to a 4-2 victory over UTSA Sunday afternoon at Roadrunner Field.
The Lions pounded out 10 hits in the game, giving them 46 in the series. Jordan Serena went 3-fo-r-3 on the day, while Paller and Logan Boyher each went 2-for-4. Roy and reliever Mike Weisman combined to give up just hits Sunday.
The Roadrunners scored the first run of the game in the bottom of the second when Mike Warren tagged up on a Tony Ramirez fly out down the right field line.
The Lions wasted little time responding, as Paller came through with two RBI in the top of the third. With two outs, Serena gave Columbia a base runner when he was hit by a pitch. A fielding error in left allowed Aaron Silbar to reach safely and Serena moved up to third on the play. Taking advantage of the situation, Paller roped a single on a 2-1 pitch to score both the Lions’ base runners.
UTSA evened the score in the bottom of the fifth, taking advantage of consecutive fielding errors. With runners on the corners, C.J. Pickering hit a sharp ball to short in the next at bat, ricocheting off Silbar’s glove, giving Ramirez the opportunity to score.
The sixth inning passed without a run for either side, with Roy getting the 2-3-4 hitters in UTSA’s lineup in order.
Columbia’s offense came through for its starting pitcher in the top of the seventh, scoring two runs to reclaim the lead. With one down, Serena doubled to the left field gap on a 0-2 pitch and then moved up to third on Silbar’s single. That prompted a UTSA pitching change, but reliever Michael Kraft only threw four pitches, walking Paller to load the bases, before he was replaced by Cody Brannon.
Facing Gus Craig, the left-hander bounced one past his catcher to the backstop, allowing Serena to slide into home for the go-ahead run. After a Craig walk, Logan Boyher gave Columbia an insurance RBI, as his pop-up to second, that was signaled an infield fly, was dropped and Silbar scored.
Roy’s strong day on the bump continued in the bottom of the seventh. He allowed just his third hit of the day to start the frame, but got the next three UTSA hitters in successive order. In the eighth, Roy got a lead-off fly out and then notched his second strikeout before walking Jesse Baker. That free base brought a Lions’ pitching change, as Mike Weisman came in from the bull pen to get the third out, a fly out to left field.
UTSA showed some life in the ninth with a single from Warren and a walk by John Bormann, but Weisman struck out Ramirez and on the same play Fischer threw out Warren trying to steal third. A fly out to Paller in left locked up the win for Columbia.
Columbia’s tour through the Lone Star State will continue with a Tuesday night match-up in College Station against Texas A&M.