Arkansas evened the Texas League Championship Series at a game apiece following a 1-0 win over San Antonio Wednesday night at Wolff Stadium.
After getting shutout in Game 1, the Travelers were able to strike early on Wednesday night. In the top of the second, Travis Witherspoon worked a two-out walk against San Antonio starter Eddie Bonine. Catcher Carlos Ramirez extended the inning with a single to left center before Randal Grichuk put the Travs up 1-0 with a single of his own.
Arkansas had a great chance to add to their lead in the top of the sixth, when they put runners on second and third with nobody out. Bonine quickly picked up two outs when Kaleb Cowart hit into a fielder's choice and Witherspoon struck out. The veteran right-hander got help from his catcher Rocky Gale to escape the jam entirely. With Ramirez at bat, Gale blocked a Bonine pitch in the dirt and then fired to second to get an overaggressive Cowart.
An inning later, San Antonio wasted what turned out to be their best scoring chance of the night. The Missions put runners on first and second with one out for Game 1's hero Austin Hedges. However, Arkansas starter Michael Roth dodged trouble when he induced the designated hitter to bounce into an inning-ending double play.
Roth's (2-0) night ended when he allowed a Gale leadoff single in the eighth. The southpaw allowed just four hits and one walk in picking up his second win of the postseason.
David Carpenter and Michael Morin (3rd postseason save) each tossed a perfect inning to cap the Arkansas shutout.
Like Arkansas' Brandon Hynick the night before, Bonine (1-1) was the hard-luck loser allowing just one run on seven hits in eight strong innings.
After a travel day, the TLCS shifts to North Little Rock for Game 3 on Friday night. First pitch from Dickey-Stephens Park will be 7:10 PM. Donn Roach (0-0, 2.70) will take the hill for the Missions, while the Travelers will counter with fellow righty Mark Sappington (1-0, 3.60).
Notes: The TLCS has opened with consecutive 1-0 scores. The only time in TL history that a Championship Series has had back-to-back 1-0 scores was in Games 4-5 of the 1957 Final between Dallas and Houston. Dallas was the winner in both of those contests. Both runs of the 2013 TLCS have come in the second inning.