San Antonio – Angelo State University scored six first inning runs and held off a comeback attempt by St. Mary’s University for an 11-6 win over the Rattlers in non-conference baseball action Wednesday afternoon at V.J. Keefe Memorial Stadium.

The Rams scored six runs in the first inning off starting pitcher Brandon Key (So., Katy) to take a big early lead. Key was able to retire just one batter before being lifted. Michael Villarreal (So., Eagle Pass) came on and got the Rattlers out of the jam. He would then have one of his best outing of the year over the next six innings, limiting the Rams to just one unearned run heading into the seventh inning. However Villarreal, who threw 110 pitches in the game tired in that inning and the Rams picked up two runs. Villarreal finished by allowing two earned runs on seven hits and three walks, while striking out four.

Offensively the Rattlers had opportunities to break through against ASU, totaling 13 hits, but leaving 10 runners on in the game. Jonathon Cisneros (Sr., Boerne) smacked his second homerun of the season, while Michael Brzezinski (So., Helotes) had his sixth long ball. Cisneros’ shot in the fifth inning pulled the Rattlers to within 7-4. But that was as close as the Rattlers would get.

Joseph Key picked up the win in relief for the Rams, allowing two runs on four hits, while striking out two in five innings of work. He is now 3-5 this season. Brandon Key fell to 2-6 overall with the loss.

The Rattlers fell to 30-16 overall with the loss. ASU improved to 37-15. They will return to action on Friday when they host Oklahoma Panhandle State in a Heartland Conference doubleheader starting at 2 p.m. at V.J. Keefe Memorial Stadium.

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