JONESBORO, Ark. - The Middle Tennessee team overcame an early deficit again on Saturday, but ultimately fell to host Arkansas State 7-6 in 11 innings at Tomlinson Stadium in Jonesboro, Ark.
Hank LaRue had led the Blue Raiders on offense, highlighted by a game-tying three-run double in the third inning. The freshman ended 2-for-5 with three runs batted in and a run scored.
Ryan Ford was 3-for-5 with a run.
Trent Miller and Will Skinner both had two-hit days, going 2-for-4 and 2-for-6, respectively, with an RBI apiece.
Hunter Adkins got the start on the mound for Middle Tennessee and pitched six innings and allowed five runs.
Joey McClung and Paul Mittura came on in relief. McClung allowed one hit over an inning, and Mittura threw for the final 3.1 frames, allowing two runs.
For the second straight day, Arkansas State (21-24, 9-11 SBC) raced out to an early three run advantage, but as they did on Friday evening, the Blue Raiders responded by posting a four-run frame to grab the lead. Johnny Thomas and Tyler Acker laced back-to-back one-out singles in the third inning, and Skinner loaded the bases after getting hit by a pitch. With two outs, LaRue delivered with a bases-clearing double to even things up. Miller brought him home with a single to right.
Both Thomas and Acker finished the afternoon 1-for-5 with a run scored.
However, the Middle Tennessee (15-28, 7-13 SBC) lead was short-lived as ASU's Ryan Emery blasted his second home run of the game to bring it back even at 4-4.
Arkansas State regained the lead in the bottom of the sixth, but the Blue Raiders came back to tie it up in the eighth. Skinner singled to lead off the inning and ultimately scored on a Dain McNabb single to center.
The score would stay even through the ninth to send the game into extra innings. Middle Tennessee grabbed lead in the eleventh. Ford led off with a single and eventually scored on a Guidry single later in the inning.
After loading the bases in both the ninth and 10th inning without being able to cash in, the Red Wolves won the game with a pair of runs in the bottom of 11th.
Middle Tennessee will play the series finale Saturday evening.