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Javelinas baseball blanked by St. Edward's in season opener

Texas A&M-Kingsville couldn't get the bats going in the season and series-opening loss to the Hilltoppers.

KINGSVILLE, Texas — The Texas A&M-Kingsville baseball team fell to St. Edward's 6-0 in the inaugural matchup of the 2023 season in Lone Star Conference action at Nolan Ryan Field.

The No. RV/NR Javelinas (0-1, 0-1 LSC) couldn't overcome a potent pitching performance by Wesley Gafford that propelled the No. RV/16 Hilltoppers (1-0, 1-0 LSC) to an opening-day victory.

Junior Kobe Jaramillo began the day on the mound for TAMUK, tossing four innings and recording five strikeouts for the Javelinas, while redshirt sophomore Ramsey Amador was the lone member of the squad to register multiple hits against SEU.

After a strikeout to open the season, Jaramillo logged another in the top of the second before a Hilltopper triple with two outs represented the first hit of the ballgame. The Bishop, Texas native clamped down, fanning another and stranding the runner to get out of the inning.

A walk and a home run by Collin Ainsworth in the top of the third opened the scoring, ahead of a two-run double that resulted in a 4-0 SEU lead before the conclusion of the inning.

Jaramillo struck out two more before senior Luis Martinez entered in the fifth with a runner in scoring position. He began his outing with back-to-back K's before plunking a batter and inducing a fly out to get out of the jam.

The Pack found their first base runner of the contest in the fifth as senior Steven Bonuz slapped a leadoff single ahead of an Amador base knock that moved him into scoring position. Bonuz later charged home after an SEU miscue but was thrown out just in time, keeping the Topper shutout intact.

TAMUK again threatened in the bottom of the sixth, with a leadoff walk by Duarte, a fielders choice ground ball by Becker, and a Wolff single resulting in a pair of base runners for the Javelinas. An errant pitch by Gafford moved Becker to third, but the reigning LSC Pitcher of the Year worked a strikeout, stranding him there.

A walk and a triple courtesy of Connor Cox plated a run before he crossed the plate himself shortly after for the sixth and final run of the ballgame.

Sophomore Karson Shepard made his Blue and Gold debut in relief, tossing 1.1 innings with a pair of strikeouts and five batters faced before southpaw Matt Vasquez tossed a scoreless ninth with two strikeouts himself.

The teams will meet again for a Saturday doubleheader with first pitch slated for 2 p.m. ahead of a 1 p.m. series finale on Sunday at Nolan Ryan Field.

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