Fourth-seeded Tennessee Wesleyan sent Talladega home in the Tornadoes' first NAIA National Tournament game on Tuesday as TWC came away with an 11-9 win as both teams combined for 27 hits and five errors. The Bulldogs (34-23-1) advanced to play LSU Alexandria in the 6 p.m. game Tuesday night.
The Tornadoes, as they had done on Monday against Embry-Riddle, jumped out to an early lead with a two-run first, but after the Bulldogs answered with three runs in the first and another in the second, the Tornadoes found themselves trailing 4-2.
Brent Adheen saw his 4-2 lead disappear in the third when TC plated four runs to retake a 5-4 advantage and pushed it to 7-4 with another two runs in the fourth frame. However, the Bulldogs answered with two runs of their own off of starter Luis Benitez, cutting the lead to 7-6.
A single run in the fifth pushed the Tornadoes' lead to 8-6, and both teams' offenses went quiet until a four-run seventh by TWC, starting with a two-run homer from Matt Malloy to knot the game before the Bulldogs took the lead for good and held on, 11-9.
In the best game of the first two days in the NAIA National Championship Opening Round Daytona Beach Bracket, the Tennessee Wesleyan Bulldogs (35-23-1) outlasted LSU Alexandria (35-25), 2-1 in 11 innings to eliminate the Generals and move to Wednesday. The Bulldogs will take on Embry-Riddle in an elimination contest at 12 p.m. on Wednesday for the right to play Southern Poly at 4 p.m.
The game was a pitcher's duel for nine innings as Tyler Patterson (TWC) matched Rynn Touchet (LSUA) for three innings before LSUA finally got a run when Chance Schmidt drove in Mike Fredeboeling to give the Generals a 1-0 lead.
Touchet was untouchable through 6.2 innings, not giving up a hit until Josh McCray doubled in the seventh. Touchet kept the Bulldogs from scoring, but was removed in the eighth for Hunter Wallace.
Wallace got in trouble in the ninth and Tim Kiene kept TWC's season alive with two outs in the top of the ninth with an RBI single to right center, scoring Josh McCray from second to tie the game at 1-1.
Tyler Wilson pitched the final 2.2 innings for the Bulldogs, allowing no hits with three walks and four Ks and the Bulldogs took a 2-1 lead in the 11th on a K.J. Hockaday single that plated Logan Longwith.