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GREENSBORO, N.C. – The Spartan offense couldn’t solve the riddle of the North Carolina A&T pitching staff Monday evening at the UNCG Baseball Stadium. The Spartans managed just five hits as they dropped a 3-2 contest to the cross-town rival. UNCG falls to 20-7 with the loss, while the North Carolina A&T Aggies improves to 14-14.

“They’re starting pitcher did a really good job tonight.” Head coach Link Jarrett said, “He did exactly what we knew he could do. He navigates it and he stays out of the zone just enough. We played right into it with a lot of fly ball outs. We never could get anything going offensively.”

“Dan (Loats) pitched fine, obviously the home run was a momentum building play for them, but it shouldn’t have been enough to beat us.” Jarrett continued, “Offensively, we didn’t have any answer for the left-hander. The guys they brought in out of the bullpen executed well and did a good job. They played a very good game tonight.”

Dan Loats got the start on the mound. The senior threw a season-best 4.2 innings, allowing six hits, three runs; two earned, walked two and struck out five before giving way to Easton Welch. Welch logged a career-high 3.1 innings, allowing just one hit and striking out a career-high four hitters. Andrew Wantz came on for the ninth, tossing a scoreless frame.

Tripp Shelton led the offense with a 2-for-4 performance, scoring a run. Dillon Stewart provided the only RBI of the game on a ground out. Austin Embler finished 1-for-3 with a run scored.

The Aggies jumped ahead early, getting a two-run homer from Rorie James in the top of the second inning.

UNCG cut the lead in half in the bottom of the third. Embler led off with a walk and went first to third on a hit and run with Andrew Moritz. Stewart hit into a fielder’s choice, but legged out the attempted double play attempt allowing the run to score.

North Carolina A&T added to its lead in the fifth. After putting two on with two outs, a passed ball and a wild pitch allowed a run to score before the final out was recorded and UNCG trailed, 3-1.

UNCG cut into the lead in the sixth inning. Shelton singled and moved to up to third. With the bases loaded, the A&T catcher threw behind the runner at second base, Madole slid in safe and the throw allowed Shelton to score from third. UNCG couldn’t score the tying run.

The baseball team is back in action tomorrow at 6 p.m. as it will host the Charlotte 49ers at the UNCG Baseball Stadium.