MONTGOMERY, Ala. (MERCER ATHLETICS) - The Mercer baseball team failed to get anything going offensively and dropped a 4-0 road decision to Alabama State on Tuesday evening at the Wheeler-Watkins Baseball Complex.
Mercer (3-1) mustered just four hits in the contest, all singles, and was shutout for the first time since losing 8-0 to Kennesaw State on March 17, 2012
Alabama State jumped on the board first, using a stolen base by senior Leo Rojas and a throwing error to take a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second inning.
The Bears had a chance to tie the game up in the top of the third, but with runners on second and third sophomore Chesny Young flew out to end the threat.
The Hornets increased their lead in the bottom of the fourth when a sacrifice fly by sophomore Manny Rodriguez and a fielder's choice plated a pair of runs to make the score 3-0.
Alabama State starting pitcher Anthony Ricciardi kept the Bears offense at bay over the first half of the game, throwing 4.1 innings of shutout ball to go along with seven strikeouts.
The sledding didn't get any easier for the Bears once they got into the Alabama State bullpen either, as a trio or Hornet relievers held them to just one hit over the last 4.2 innings of the contest to secure the win.
Sophomore Grant Papelian took the loss for the Bears in his second career start, surrendering three runs, two of which were earned, on six hits in 4.0 innings pitched.
Mercer now prepares for its 2013 season home opener on Friday evening when it begins a three-game series with MEAC champion Bethune-Cookman. Game time is scheduled for 6 p.m. at Claude Smith Field.