March 22, 2014
No. 21 HOUSTON
HOUSTON - Houston Baseball was able to slide past College of Charleston on Saturday, earning a 3-2 win at Cougar Field to improve to 18-4 on the year and 14-1 at home.
The win on Saturday put Houston up 2-0 in the weekend series, allowing the Cougars to earn their fifth weekend series of the season. College of Charleston fell to 16-6 with the loss.
Just a reminder that Sunday's game time is now slated for 11 a.m. instead of 11:30 a.m. due to the weather forecast.
Sophomore starter Jake Lemoine (5.0,1,0,0,5,6) improved to 4-1 on the year as he went 5.0 innings, allowing just one hit and five walks to accompany his six strikeouts. He didn't allow a run and he rode a no-hitter into the sixth when CofC struck for its first hit, a leadoff double.
Lemoine was relieved in the sixth by senior Tyler Ford (2.0,2,1,1,0,0) as the lefty tossed 2.0 complete innings, allowing just one run on two hits. He was dynamite in helping the Cougars escape a huge sixth-inning threat by CofC, which saw it strand the bases loaded to help preserve Houston's 2-0 lead.
Senior Chase Wellbrock (2.0,5,1,0,0,1) came in and earned his sixth save of the year and 18th of his career, allowing just one unearned run on five hits with one strikeout.
Offensively, Houston and College of Charleston each tallied eight hits as senior Casey Grayson (2x3, 2 RBI, 2 2B, BB) put together one of his best outings of his career, tallying two, two-run doubles for a team-best two RBI. Junior Michael Pyeatt (2x3, RBI) drove in the game's first run, while tallying two hits - joining sophomore Kyle Survance's (2x4, R, 2B) two-hit day.
Adding hits in the effort were junior Cole Coakley (1x1, R), who notched his first career hit as a Cougar and beat out the infield single - and later scoring from first, which proved to be the game winner. Sophomore Josh Vidales (1x4, R) got the Cougars on board after a single and scoring the game's first run.
Pyeatt's RBI-single in the second inning put Houston on board first, scoring Vidales, who singled to open the frame and moved to second on a walk by Stading. The Cougars held that lead until they struck for another run in the fifth following a leadoff single by Survance, a stolen base and an RBI-double into left center by Grayson.
College of Charleston made it interesting in the sixth when it loaded the bases with no outs following a leadoff double and back-to-back walks. Ford took over in relief for Lemoine and was able to escape the threat without CofC crossing the plate. He induced an infield popup, flyout down the foul line and a groundout to second base. A play that was the highlight of the day was when Ford induced a popup down the right field line that found Grayson making the play deep into foul territory for the second out of the inning and coming up gunning home to keep the CofC runner from tagging from third - which could have tied the game.
Ford continued his strong relief outing, allowing just one hit in the seventh, but stranded the runner - sending Houston back to offense, which led to another run. Houston went up 3-0 on Grayson's second straight RBI double that found the left center gap, scoring Coakley from first after he reached on a one-out infield single.
College of Charleston opened the eighth with a leadoff homerun to make it a 3-1 game, which led to Wellbrock taking over for Ford. Wellbrock allowed two hits, but CofC had nothing to show for it.
Heading into the top of the ninth, Houston held a 3-1 lead, but CofC continued its late-game rallies, plating one following a leadoff single, throwing error and double through the left side.
The game ended on a play that saw the CofC base runner miss third base attempting to tie the game. Houston appealed the play and the runner was ruled out - for the final out of the game.
College of Charleston starter Bailey Ober (6.0,6,2,2,3,4) was tagged with his first loss of 2014, falling to 4-1. The 6-foot-8 right-hander also recorded his first walks of the year - placing three Cougars on base via the base on balls - with freshman Jordan Stading drawing the first for Ober in the second inning.
"That was a wild one. I've never seen a game end like that, but I told the team whether we won the game or lost it my postgame speech would have been the same. I really appreciate our effort today. We played hard. That team in the other dugout is a really good team. That's as good of an offensive team as I've seen in a long time. There are no easy outs over there, every time they swing the bat you think it'll be a home run. I'm really proud of (Tyler) Ford for getting out of that bases load jam. That was huge for us, and (Casey) Grayson may have had his best game of his career here today. A big play in a game that something people won't talk about is Cole Coakley busting it down to first base to beat out an infield single. The next guy up is Grayson who drove him in with a double. I tell the team you never know which run will win or lose the game, and that was a perfect example of it tonight."
On coming in with the bases loaded and not giving up a run
"My mindset going into that situation was getting outs. I know I can trust my defense behind me, so I just have to hit my spots. I've embraced this long relief role. I know I'm the guy who has to come in, and not break for my pitching staff."
On Coach Todd Whitting saying he had his best game of his career
"It might be, I'm not really sure on that one. I know personally I've been struggling at the plate lately. I came out swinging today, and played some good defense. Tyler (Ford) came out, and made some pitches today, and did a great job. The entire team played hard today. It was a great team effort today, wasn't about just one person."
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Houston and College of Charleston will wrap up its three-game series on Sunday at 11 a.m. at Cougar Field. Note: Game time has been moved up 30 minutes from its originally scheduled 11:30 a.m. start.
By visiting UHCougars.com, clicking the Tickets link, and then Purchase Tickets, while following the appropriate links to the Baseball page or by clicking here, fans can begin purchasing tickets for single games at Cougar Field this season.
COUGAR SPRING FLING vs. LOUISVILLE TICKETS
Tickets for the Cougar Spring Fling, good for general admission to both events, are just $5 prior to April 11 and $10 on April 11. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE TICKETS FOR THE COUGAR SPRING FLING.
Tickets can be purchased in advance through UHCougars.com or by calling the Houston Athletics Ticket Office at 713-462-6647. Tickets on the day of the event can be purchased at the Houston Athletics Ticket Office, located in the Athletics/Alumni Center at 3100 Cullen Blvd., or at the event's entrances beginning at 5 p.m.
All Houston Baseball season ticket holders and single game reserved seat ticket holders ($12-15) will be admitted into Cougar Spring Fling with their previously purchased tickets. All seating at the Houston Football Spring Game will be general admission.
Cash parking for the Spring Fling will be available in the Houston Football Stadium parking garage and in lot 16C located across from Cougar Field on Cullen Blvd.
FAMILY PLAN TICKET PACKAGE
Families can purchase the Family Plan for just $399, which includes two adult and two youth General Admission tickets to each of the 33 home games.
General Admission seats include 33 "Anytime Tickets". You may use one ticket to each home game, 33 tickets to one game, or any combination in between.
General Admission season tickets start for as low as $150 (33 home games/$4.50 per ticket), while Reserved season tickets start at only $200 (33 home games/$6.00 per ticket).
To purchase, visit the Tickets tab, Purchase Tickets, while following the appropriate links to the Baseball page under Season Tickets or by clicking here.
For questions or concerns, call or visit the Athletics Ticket Office at 713-GO-COOGS (462-6647) or 877-COUGAR-5 (268-4275).
KIDS (8th grade & younger) with CAMP T-SHIRT GET IN FREE
Kids who show up to Cougar Field in a UH Baseball Camp T-Shirt and are in the eighth grade or younger will receive FREE ADMISSION to any Houston Baseball home game.