SAN ANTONIO - Despite a ninth-inning game-tying two-out RBI single from junior transfer Tyler Gnesda (Laguna Nigel, Calif.), the UConn baseball team fell, 6-5, to UTSA on Saturday afternoon in the second game of a three-game set. With the loss, the Huskies drop to 0-2, while the Roadrunners move to 2-0.
Junior 2B Aaron Hill (Groton, Conn.) went 1-for-3 with a walk and two RBIs at the dish for the Huskies, while Gnesda drove in his first two runs in a Husky uniform in the setback.
Sophomore RHP Wills Montgomerie did not factor in the decision after earning his first start of the season. The righty pitched into the sixth, allowing five earned runs on seven hits with a walk and a career-best six strikeouts. His counterpart Karan Patel went 3.1 innings, surrendering two runs on four hits with a pair of walks.
The Huskies broke a scoreless tie in the top of the fourth, putting two runs on the board. After a pair of walks and a Bryan Daniello (Nowalk, Conn. ) infield single chased Patel from the game, Hill picked up his first RBI of the season with a walk before freshman C Zac Susi (Southington, Conn.) registered his first career collegiate RBI with a liner to centerfield.
The Roadrunners pulled even in the home half of the fifth, stringing together three hits, including an bloop RBI single off the bat of Ryan Stacy, against Montgomerie.
In the sixth, UConn had a scoring opportunity after Daniello worked a two-out walk and stole second base but the Husky shortstop was stranded after Andre Shewcraft induced an inning-ending groundout.
UTSA's big blast came in the sixth inning when senior Geonte Jackson hit a three-run homer to dead-center to push the score to 5-2 in favor of the Roadrunners.
Connecticut cut into the Roadrunner lead in the seventh after Gnesda registered an RBI groundout, scoring Troy Stefanski (North Stonington, Conn.) to move the score to 5-3.
Hill pulled the Huskies within one in the eighth, sending an RBI single up the middle to plate senior OF Joe-DeRoche-Duffin (Santa Ana, Calif.) before Gnesda delivered a two-out base knock in the ninth to score leadoff hitter Jack Sundberg.
P.J. Poulin (0-1) took the loss after allowing the eventual game-winning run to reach in the bottom of the ninth, while Karl Craigie (1-0) grabbed the win with 0.1 innings of scoreless relief.
Connecticut falls to 10-14 all-time against Conference USA opponents.
The weekend finale is set for Sunday, Feb. 21. First pitch at Roadrunner Field is scheduled for 1 p.m. ET.
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