COLLEGE STATION, Texas — Sam Houston could not come up with the big hit with runners in scoring position in a 3-1 loss to New Mexico State in the opening round of the WAC Tournament at Hohokam Stadium on Wednesday.
The Bearkats (31-24) will now face Sacramento State in an elimination game at 11 a.m. on Thursday.
The Aggies (21-32) struck first thanks to a pair of walks by starting pitcher Matt Dillard to begin the third inning. He was able to get a groundout and a strikeout, but second baseman Edwin Pagani laced a two-run triple down the right field line to make it 2-0.
That was the only mistakes Dillard (5-6) made. He went six strong innings and tied a career high with nine strikeouts.
Sam Houston's lone run came in the fourth inning. WAC Player of the Year Carlos Contreras laced a double down the right field line and came around to score on an RBI single to left center by Easton Loyd.
The Bearkats had a chance to tie the game in the sixth inning. Walker Janek ripped a triple to right center but was thrown out at home trying to stretch it into an inside the park home run for the final out of the inning.
New Mexico State added an insurance run in the top of the ninth when Tommy Tabak sent a Logan Hewitt offering over the wall in left center field.
Sam Houston had an opportunity to tie it again the bottom of the ninth when Contreras and Loyd singled but New Mexico State was able to get out of the jam.