ABILENE, Texas — Nico Moran, Alvaro Moreno and Colten Boothe hit run-scoring singles in the eighth inning Saturday and Tarleton State held on for a 7-5 win over Eastern New Mexico University in the Whitten Inn Classic, hosted by Abilene Christian.
The Texans (9-6-1) scored single runs in each of the first four innings, and opened a 7-3 lead with their three-run eighth. The Greyhounds (11-4) made it close in the ninth with a pair of runs, but right-hander Garrett Kelly closed out a 3 1/3-inning relief stint to earn his third save.
ENMU outhit Tarleton 12-11, with all but one hit — a third-inning RBI double to left-center by Hounds catcher Jacob Rogers — singles. Second baseman Colton Sims went 4-for-five and Rogers and third baseman Rafael Romo were both 3-for-5 for ENMU.
Left-hander Matt Buckmaster (3-1) pitched into the sixth inning for the Texans. Kelley relieved him with two on and two out and protected a 4-3 lead by striking out first baseman Daniel Binz.
Kelly threw perfect innings in the seventh and eighth before running into trouble when Romo led off the ninth with a single. After a fielder's choice, Binz drew a walk and Romo came around to score on a fielder's choice and throwing error on the play by Texan's second baseman Ryan Small.
Rogers followed with an RBI single to center before Kelly retired Blake Cooper on a fly ball to center to end it.
Right-hander Ryan Boydstun (2-1) pitched into the sixth for the Hounds, allowing five hits and four runs — three earned.
The Hounds wrap up play in the weekend event with a noon (MST) start today against Cameron.