UTD’s Tony Adler could be pitching in the major leagues or at least in a top 10 Division I school. And, after managing a paltry three hits against the senior right hander, Texas Wesleyan probably wishes he was.
Adler, a San Diego Padres draftee and University of South Carolina transfer, struck out five and allowed two unearned runs in his first start for the Comets – a 4-2 home win in the opening game of a Feb. 21 doubleheader.
“(Adler) came in with some good credentials and they’ve all been correct so far,” UTD baseball coach Shane Shewmake said. “We’re expecting some good things.”
Two Comet errors in the top of the fourth allowed Texas Wesleyan to jump out to a 2-0 lead, but UTD answered back with two runs in the bottom of the fifth.
Junior right fielder Fielding Lewis sparked the comeback with a two-run triple into the right field corner. One inning later, junior designated hitter Rob Spencer put the Comets on top with an RBI hit that scored senior left fielder Caleb Chandler.
Junior catcher Justin Price added an insurance run with a sacrifice fly later in the sixth.
In the nightcap, four Comet errors doomed UTD as Texas Wesleyan picked up its first win of the season, 8-4.
UTD fell behind early – giving up five earned runs in the third – and couldn’t fight back. Junior southpaw Kevin McKnight absorbed the loss as the Comets stranded seven base runners.
In their Feb. 20 home opener, the Comets laid waste to overmatched Southwest Assembly of God, posting a 24-1 victory.
Senior third baseman Mike Biguenet scorched SAGU pitching with a 4-for-4 performance at the plate, including a homerun and three RBIs.
“(Biguenet) has been playing really well. As a senior, it’s his last go round and he’s making the most of it,” Shewmake said, adding that Biguenet may be the best defensive player he has ever coached.
Four other Comets practiced their homerun trots, including Spencer who went yard twice, his second, a grand slam. Spencer ended the game with a season-high seven RBIs.
Freshman lefty Frederick Schurr posted six strong innings, and after UTD plated nine runs in the third, the outcome was never in doubt.
Shewmake attributed the offensive explosion to equal parts SAGU pitching inexperience and UTD hitting prowess.
“I see us as a doubles team, but every once in a while we’ll be able to leave the yard,” he said.
UTD opened its season Feb. 17 with a 7-4 victory against Southwestern. The Comets scored three unearned runs on three Southwestern errors in the top of the ninth to pick up the win
Sophomore Randy Black threw four and one-third innings of two-hit relief to secure the UTD victory. McKnight struck out two of the five batters he faced for the save.
Biguenet drove in three runs on four hits and senior center fielder Mike Cardoza doubled in a run and scored twice.
Shewmake said he was pleased with his team’s offensive production, but stressed their need to get better defensively.
“The more we play, the better we’ll get,” Shewmake said.