(UAAP photo)

THE UST Golden Sox suffered their second straight loss and lost grip on the top seed after falling short against the Ateneo Blue Eagles, 10-8, in the second round of the UAAP Season 86 baseball tournament at the UP Diliman Baseball Field on Thursday, March 21. 

The Golden Sox slid to a 4-4 win-loss slate, giving up the best record to Ateneo, which improved to 5-3.

UST trailed by six in the bottom of the ninth inning after going scoreless from the fourth to the eighth inning, 10-4.

However, Golden Sox John Vargas, Steven Dominguez and Justine Rosales sparked a late rally in the bottom ninth, driving three runs to cut the deficit to three, 10-7. 

Ateneo’s defense halted the Golden Sox’s momentum, making it two outs in the same inning as Blue Eagle pitcher Joshua De Juras struck out Harry Geronimo and John Barsales flew out to left field.

An Alwyn Piñero run allowed UST to inch closer, 10-8, but Golden Sox Sean de Leon grounded out to De Juras and spoiled the comeback. 

The Golden Sox went down by three, 3-0, in the top of the first inning, but bounced back in the bottom third with four runs to overtake the Blue Eagles by a margin, 4-3. 

UST tallied eight hits compared to Ateneo’s 12. The Golden Sox were hounded by six errors. 

The Golden Sox will next face the NU Bulldogs at the same venue on March 24, Sunday, at 3 p.m.