Lions walk off to take series

The Lions’ rollercoaster series against Lamar showcased their dominance, vulnerability and resilience all in one weekend.
The Lions won two of the three games against Incarnate Word to take the series victory. Games were hosted by Southeastern at Pat Kenelly Diamond at Alumni Field.
The series opener on Friday night saw Andro Cutura start on the mound for the Lions. Defense was emphasized as neither team scored through six innings. In Cutura’s eight innings on the mound, he allowed only four hits to the Cardinals and was able to fan nine batters. The scoreless eight innings by Cutura now puts him at 17.1 innings since he has let in a run.
Incarnate Word was doing their part on defense as well. Starting pitcher Geno Encina went six innings without the Lions scoring a run. His chances at a shutout were denied in the bottom of the seventh inning when Southeastern scored the only runs of the game. Right fielder Andrew Godbold came across home plate and scored the opening run after a single into centerfield from Brett Hoffman.
Dylan Hills came into the game for Cutura in the ninth inning. Seventeen pitches later, the game was over and the Lions took the series opener win, 3-0. Cutura earned the win and improved to 6-1 this season while Hills gained his third save of the season.
Saturday’s matchup did not go as smoothly for the Lions. UIW got on the board early, scoring two runs in the first inning. Batting for the Cardinals proved to be challenging Tate Scioneaux, who started as pitcher for the Lions. Scioneaux was pulled after allowing five runs off of nine hits in 4.2 innings of work.
The Lions scored a run of their own in the bottom of the fourth to cut the Cardinal’s lead down to one. The Cardinals quickly responded by tacking on three runs in the fifth inning. Now down 5-1, the Lions had put themselves into a hole that they could not claw out of. Despite a late surge in the eighth inning, Southeastern was unable to catch the Cardinals and lost 5-3. Scioneaux was credited with the loss, which brought his record to 5-3.
Sunday afternoon’s rubber match between the two teams featured a dramatic finish that many Lions fans will not forget. Starting on the mound for Southeastern was senior Sean Kennel. Opposite him was Jacob Potts for the Cardinals.
It seemed to be a long day for the Lions as Incarnate Word scored three runs in the first two innings. Southeastern was unable to earn a hit until the fourth inning, which is when the Lions found success at bat.
Sam Roberson gave the Lions their first run off of a single into leftfield by Godbold. The Lions scored once more in the same inning when Kennon Menard was walked and forced Jameson Fisher home due to the loaded bases. Southeastern did not end scoring in the fourth inning right there, as they tied the game with Godbold crossing home plate.
After a scoreless fifth inning, the Cardinals managed to take the lead once more in the sixth inning. It would not be long until the Lions answered, however. After a single into left field by Jameson Fisher, Jacob Williams crossed home to tie the game back up at four a piece.
Leftfielder Kyle Cedotal sent a charge through the crowd after he got onto base with a single to right field. One batter later, Cedotal was patiently waiting at third base to pounce on an opportunity to score the winning run. Kris Looper, pitcher for the Cardinals, gave Cedotal this opportunity in the form of a wild pitch and Cedotal capitalized. The walk off win granted the Lions the series victory.
“It was a feeling like no other,” said Cedotal on scoring the game winning run.
Although satisfied with the win, Head Coach Matt Riser still saw areas to improve in the play coming from the Lions.
“We didn’t play very well all weekend. To be honest with you, I think we did a decent job on Friday night, but the other two we didn’t play well at all,” said Riser. “But when you don’t play well, you still have to find a way to win.”
The Lions next play Tuesday as they travel to South Alabama. The start of the game is scheduled for 6 p.m.