HOUSTON - Led by another stellar outing by sophomore Andrew Lantrip, No. 3 Houston Baseball earned its second shutout of the year, defeating Columbia, 3-0 in the series opener Friday night at Cougar Field.
The win snapped Houston's two-game skid and lifted its overall record to 7-2 and its record at Cougar Field to 7-1, while Columbia dropped its first game played of the 2015 season.
Lantrip (7.2,5,0,0,1,6), in his third start of the year, improved to 3-0 and now 9-0 in his career after tossing 7.2 shutout innings, allowing five scattered hits with six strikeouts - a season best for the sophomore.
The Livingston, Texas native retired the first seven hitters he faced, before allowing a 1-out double in the third. The Lions weren't able to make anything of the hit as Lantrip escaped the inning without any harm done.
In the latter innings, Lantrip sat down nine of the next 10 hitters he faced and with two outs in the eighth, he handed the ball over to relievers Bubba Maxwell (0.0,0,0,0,0,0) and freshman Seth Romero (1.1,1,0,0,0,1).
Romero came in with a 2-0 count on his first hitter and stretch it to 3-1 with runners at first and second in the eighth, but was able to record an inning-ending strikeout to keep Columbia off the board. He returned in the ninth, allowing just one hit and inducing a game-ending double play to earn his third save in jus this fourth appearance out of the bullpen.
Houston and Columbia matched in hits with six apiece, but it was the Cougars who took advantage of their base knocks and four walks to plate three runs.
Junior Chris Iriart continued his hot hitting with a 2-for-3 effort with a run scored and RBI, including a leadoff double in the sixth. Freshman Connor Wong also recorded a two-hit game, going 2-for-4 with an RBI.
Also driving in a run was freshman Michael Wisz, who tallied his first career RBI on his first career hit at Houston, going 1-for-3, while junior Kyle Survance (1x3, R) scored a run and added a hit and two stolen bases in the win.
Iriart drove in the game's first run on an RBI-single up the middle, plating Survance, who reached on a 1-out walk in the first inning to put the Cougars ahead 1-0.
With bases loaded and two outs in the fourth inning, Wisz notched his first career base hit and RBI, driving in Vidales on a single into right field to put Houston up 2-0. The inning began with a two-out Vidales walk, followed by a Wong single and a Montemayor walk to load the bases.
Houston added to its lead with another run in the sixth after Iriart doubled off the left center wall to open the frame. He was moved to third on a groundout by Vidales and later scored on an RBI-single by Wong.
Columbia starter George Thanopoulos (5.0,3,2,2,4,5) was chased after 5.0 innings, allowing two runs on three hits and four walks with five strikeouts, falling to 0-1 on the year.
Head Coach Todd Whitting
Overall thoughts on the game
"I thought we came out and played a lot better tonight than the last two games. It always helps when your pitching staff comes out and throws a shutout."
Houston and Columbia will continue its series on Saturday with a scheduled doubleheader, slated to begin at 2:30 p.m. with Game 2 following at approximately 6:30 p.m. The series will wrap on Sunday at Noon.
SATURDAY TICKET INFORMATION
For Saturday's doubleheader, fans will purchase one ticket for both games. For more information, visit UHCougars.com/Basetickets or call 713-GO-COOGS.
Saturday, February 28 - 80's Night (6:30 p.m. only)
- Bingo at the Ballpark - watch the game, play bingo and win!
- First 250 fans at Cougar Field: Red Go Coogs slap bracelets (6:30 pm only)
Sunday, March 1 - 90's Day
- Kids Day (Anthem Buddies, Run the Bases and postgame autographs)
**University of Houston students - FREE with your Student ID.
With 31 home games set for 2015 at Cougar Field and a Top 10 nationally-ranked preseason program representing the University of Houston, the Cougars are proud to announce that single-game tickets are now on sale at UHCougars.com/Basetickets.
Along with the online option, fans can purchase tickets by visiting the Athletics Ticket Office at TDECU Stadium Monday through Friday, 10 a.m., to 5:30 p.m. or can call 713-GO-COOGS.
Houston Baseball will offer variable pricing on its single-game tickets and group rates.
For the first time ever, the pricing breakdown will be determined whether or not you purchase your single-game tickets online vs. at the gate the day of the game as well as whether the Cougars play on a weekday (Monday-Thursday) or weekend (Friday-Sunday).
Weekday: Monday-Thursday; Weekend: Friday-Sunday.
As noted in the table, variable pricing occurs. For weekday (Tuesday nights) online purchases, fans can take in a game, ranging from $5-$7 depending on the choice of seating. If you choose to purchase the day of the game as a Weekday Walk-Up, you will pay roughly $2 more than the online price ($7-$9).
Weekend (Friday-Sunday) online pricing will range from $6-$8 per game, while Weekend Walk-Up pricing the day of the game will run a fan anywhere from $8-$10.
Group rates are also available (as noted in the table). Weekday (Tuesday) and Weekend (Friday-Sunday) pricing occurs. Groups of 10-24 are set at $4-$5 per person, while groups of 25+ are $3-$4 per person.
With single-game tickets available now, Houston Baseball still encourages supporters to become Season Ticket members and enjoy the attractive pricing and rewards that come with up-front purchasing for the entire 2015 season.
WHY ARE SEASON TICKETS MORE ATTRACTIVE?
Season Tickets are as low as $99 for general admission seating and the program offers an Anytime Tickets package that allows fans to use the 31 tickets how they choose (1 per game, multiple per game or all in one game). The Anytime Tickets are only available in general admission seating.
For just $200, you can enjoy reserved chairback seating on the lower level of the concourse at the stadium.
A new additional "Reserved 2" seating option for the 2015 season is also available with an assigned seat in sections 200, 201 and 202 for $150.
If you breakdown the season ticket pricing of $99 General Admission, the pricing of $150 for Reserved 2 or even the pricing of $200 for Reserved 1 (chairback), you are spending less money per game than purchasing single-game tickets.
HOW TO PURCHASE
To purchase tickets in advance, fans must visit the Athletics Ticket Stadium Office located on the northeast corner of TDECU Stadium, just outside of Gate 1 off Cullen Boulevard. Parking is available in the TDECU Stadium parking garage with the first 30 minutes free of charge. Regular business hours are Monday through Friday, 10 a.m., to 5:30 p.m. or you can call 713-GO-COOGS.
JOIN THE DUGOUT CLUB
Nationally-ranked Houston Baseball would like to encourage those wishing to support the efforts and success of the baseball student-athletes to consider joining the Dugout Club for as low as $25 a month or $300 annually.
For a minimum monthly installment of $25 or a minimum one-time gift of $300, supporters can take advantage of the Pinch Hitter level, which will guarantee an invitation for two to exclusive Dugout Club events and Houston Baseball team apparel.
For a minimum monthly installment of $100 or a minimum one-time gift of $1,000, supporters can take advantage of the Diamond level, which will guarantee batting practice passes for two to any home game, invitation for two to exclusive Dugout Club events and Houston Baseball apparel.
**Cougar Pride points will be applied accordingly.
For more information on joining the Dugout Club, please contact the Houston Baseball office at (713) 743-9396.
For more information regarding Cougar Pride, please call (713) 743-GOUH.
Stay up to date with all Houston Baseball news and highlights by following us on Twitter @UHCougarBB or on Facebook at /HoustonCougarBaseball. Fans can also follow head coach Todd Whitting @toddwhitting on Twitter.