By T. Scott Boatright
As it had done in its first Southwestern Athletic Conference Baseball showdown against Jackson State, Grambling State again fell behind early in Friday’s third-round game and failed to get out of it in tine.
Jackson State won the game at Toyota Field in Madison, Alabama, Friday afternoon.
But it was Southern who went on to win the tourney as the underdog Jaguars won 7-6/
For Grambling on Friday, leadoff hitter Cameron Phelts started the game with a solo home run to left field to open scoring for the G-Men before graduate student Jahmoi Percival singled to second base and ended up scoring on an error by the catcher to take an early 2-0 lead.
Jackson State countered quicky to move on top, scoring five runs in the bottom of the first inning behing four hits, including a home run.
In the top of the second inning, Grambling’s Kevin Breaux produced a stand up triple down the left field line followed by an RBI single from CJ Mervilus to JSU advantage to 5-3.
But Jackson State plated three more runs in the bottom half of the inning to extend its lead to 8-3.
After four straight scoreless innings for Grambling, JSU added a run in the bottom of the fifth inning to push its lead to 9-3.
Grambling attempted to make a late rally just as they did in yesterday’s contest. Back at the top of the lineup to begin the seventh inning, Phelts and sophomore Cameron Bufford both singled before Jordyn Smith hit a two-RBI single to left center to across two runs, cutting the JSU lead to 9-5.
But the G-Men could put aboard only one baserunner in the eighth and ninth innings as their dreams of a SWAC title fell short.
GSU finished with five runs on 12 hits, committed one error, and left nine on base.
Phelts led Grambling with a 4-for-4 batting performance with a home run, two runs, and one RBI.