Grand Prairie, Texas - The Trinity baseball team forced a winner-take-all game on Sunday, but fell short of winning the Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference Championship over Centenary (LA) College.
The Tigers rallied late in the game to take a 10-9 win in the opener, forcing the "if necessary" game in the tournament. Centenary prevailed 13-3 in the finale, though, winning the SCAC title for the first time.
Trinity struck first in the opening game, scoring twice in both the third and fourth innings to take a 4-0 lead. The Gents answered with two runs in the bottom of the fourth to cut the lead in half.
After four more runs in the fifth, though, the Tigers were in front 8-2, and it looked like they would cruise to the second game.
Centenary refused to go easily, exploding for five runs in the sixth to make it an 8-7 game. The Gents then completed the comeback with two more runs in the eighth, and were poised to win the title in just one game.
Trinity had different plans, though, scoring two runs of its own in the ninth to rally for the win, and set up the decisive game two.
Game two opened with a grand slam in the bottom of the first, and Centenary never looked back. The Gents added three more runs in the second, then enjoyed a four-run fourth to push the lead to 11-0.
Trinity scored its first run of the game in the fifth, but the Gents quickly answered with a run of their own to make it 12-1. The sixth inning was a repeat of the fifth, as both teams added scores to make it 13-2.
The Tigers scored a run in the seventh, then loaded the bases with two outs, but failed to bring in another run, and the game ended with the run-rule.
The Tigers had their conference-record streak of four consecutive SCAC Championships snapped in the lost, which also included four straight trips to the NCAA Playoffs.
Trinity finished the campaign with a 28-16 record, while sixth-ranked Centenary upped its record to 34-8, and gained the automatic bid to the NCAA Playoffs.
Scott Walters batted 4-6 with three doubles in the opening game, scoring two runs and driving in four more. Walters also drove in the tying run in the top of the ninth to set up the Tiger comeback.
Parker Cormack was just a home run shy of hitting for the cycle in game one, scoring two runs and picking up one RBI.
Rafe Chaumette had two extra-base hits in the first game, as well as collecting the go-ahead RBI with a sacrifice fly in the ninth. The first-year player completed the season with a team-leading 37 RBI.
George Haaland smacked his fifth home run of the year in the sixth inning of game two, finishing with the team lead in 2017.
Zachary Oretsky hit 2-3 in the opener, and 2-4 in the second game, going 4-7 at the plate on the day. Oretsky scored two runs in Trinity's opening-game victory.