HOUSTON - An 8-7 walk off win in the bottom of the ninth in Game 2 of the doubleheader capped a Saturday split for No. 3 Houston Baseball vs. Columbia at Cougar Field after the Cougars dropped Game 1, 5-4 in 13 innings.
The Cougars now own an 8-3 overall record after the Saturday split, while Columbia fell to 1-2 on the year. The two teams will meet once more for Game 4 of the weekend series at Noon on Sunday.
GAME 2: Houston 8, Columbia 7
A Justin Montemayor sacrifice fly in the bottom of the ninth won it for the Cougars in walkoff fashion as Wong scored the winning run after reaching on an intentional walk.
A game that saw several lead changes gave way to Houston in the ninth when junior Josh Vidales doubled to open the frame, moved to second on a Wong walk and a bunt single by freshman Corey Julks loaded the bases.
Junior Robert Grilli grounded into a fielder's choice, as Vidales was out at the plate, but Montemayor, off the bench, would drive in the go-ahead run on a deep fly ball into left field.
Houston wrapped the game with 11 hits, led by Vidales' 3-for-5 effort with three RBI and a run scored, including a double and triple.
Junior Jacob Campbell (2x3, R), junior Kyle Survance (2x4, 4, R, RBI) and freshman Connor Wong (2x4, R, RBI) each had a two-hit game, while Julks (1x5) and freshman Derek Dickerson (1x3) each singled in the win.
Houston starter Aaron Garza (6.2,10,7,4,2,3) tossed 6.2 innings, allowing four earned runs on 10 hits and two walks with three strikeouts, but handed the ball over to junior Patrick Weigel (2.1,0,0,0,1,3) in the seventh with the Cougars down 7-6.
Weigel was lights out, tossing 2.1 shutout innings with three strikeouts to earn his first win as a Cougar.
Columbia came out of the gates with two early runs in the first following a leadoff double and two-run homerun. Houston then went ahead 4-2 when it plated four runs in the third inning, sparked by a three-run triple off the bat of Vidales, while he later scored on a throwing error by Columbia.
The Lions bounced back and took advantage of two errors by the Cougars to plate three runs in the top half of the fourth, going back ahead, 5-4.
Campbell continued his hot-hitting with his third extra base hit of the day, doubling to lead off the fifth and later scored on a two-out double by Wong - evening the score back up.
Columbia retook the lead in the seventh with two more runs following three free passes and a base hit. Ahead 7-5, the Cougars kept it close with a run in the latter half of the inning as Survance opened the Houston half with a base hit and later scored to make it 7-6.
Rice led off the eighth with a hit-by-pitch, moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by junior Ashford Fulmer. Grilli took over at second base, pinch running for Rice and scored on a Survance-RBI single up the middle, tying it at 7-7.
Heading into the final frame and all tied up, the Cougars struck for two hits and a game-winning sacrifice fly to cap the win.
Columbia reliever Matthew Ratner (1.0,2,1,1,2,0) suffered the loss out of the pen.
GAME 1: Columbia 5, Houston 4 (13 innings)
Houston and Columbia played 13 innings and recorded a combined 21 hits and nine runs, but it was a two-run 13th that proved to be enough for the Lions as they evened the weekend series with their first win of the season.
Houston out hit Columbia, 12-9, led by junior Jacob Campbell's 2-for-3 effort with two doubles, three RBI off the bench. He joined Survance (2x5, 2 BB) and Fulmer (2x2, R) with a two-hit game.
Julks (1x2, RBI) drove in the other lone run for the Cougars, while freshman Zac Taylor (1x6), junior Chris Iriart (1x3, R), Vidales (1x4, R), Wong (1x6, R) and Montemayor (1x3) all added hits in the effort.
Columbia jumped on board with two runs in the second inning following two hits, including a leadoff double and a two-run single.
Lions' starter Kevin Roy (6.0,3,0,0,3,4) held Houston scoreless in his 6.0 innings and had help from his offense as they added another run in the seventh on a solo homerun by Joe Falcone.
Down 3-0 heading into the eighth inning, Iriart, Vidales, Wong all reached to load the bases and with one out in the frame, Campbell, came off the bench to pinch hit and drove the first pitch he saw into the left center gap, clearing the bases and tying the game at 3-3.
Following that hit, Houston and Columbia played four scoreless frames before the Lions would score two in the top of the 13th on an error, hit and passed ball to take a 5-3 lead. The Cougars then responded with one run in the bottom half of the inning after Fulmer singled, Campbell doubled and Julks recorded an RBI on a groundout to second base.
Houston stranded 14 runners on the base paths, while Columbia stranded nine.
Cougar starter Jake Lemoine (7.0,6,3,3,0,3) struck out three and allowed three runs on six hits in 7.0 innings of work. He was relieved by freshman Aaron Fletcher (1.2,1,0,0,1,0), who tossed 1.2 shutout innings, allowing one run and one walk.
Tied at 3-3, Fletcher handed the ball over to reliever Jared Robinson (4.1,2,2,0,2,7), who struck out seven in 4.1 innings out of the bullpen, but was tagged with the loss after allowing two unearned runs on two hits and two walks.
Columbia reliever Bryce Barr (2.0,2,1,1,2,1) earned the win out of the pen, tossing 2.0 innings, allowing one run on two hits. Teammate Brett Gannaway (1.0,0,0,0,1,0) picked up the save.
Houston and Columbia will wrap up its four-game weekend series on Sunday with first pitch slated for Noon at Cougar Field.
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.