March 25, 2005
HOUSTON - The University of Houston baseball team exploded for eight runs in the first inning and never looked back in taking a 9-6 win over No. 31 UAB in the opener of a Conference USA series Friday at Cougar Field.
The Cougars (10-13, 3-1 C-USA) pounded out eight hits in the inning and saw 10 of their first 11 batters reach safely. Sophomore infielder Brad Lincoln provided the big blast of the frame with a two-run double to deep center field, while Brett Logan, Mark McGonigle and Jake Stewart combined for back-to-back-to-back RBI singles.
Junior outfielder Travis Tully went 4-for-5 to tie his single-game high in hits and added two runs and a stolen base to lead a Cougar offensive attached which rapped out 13 hits. Lincoln finished the night 2-for-2 with three walks, a run and three RBIs, while Stewart batted 2-for-6 with a run and RBI.
Junior infielder Kevin Roberts went 1-for-3 with a run and RBI to extend his hitting streak to a UH season-best and career-best-tying 10 straight games.
UH starter Matt Farrington earned the win and improved to 5-0 after holding the Blazers to four runs (three earned) off six hits with five strikeouts in 6.1 innings. UAB starter Randy Mills collected the loss and dropped to 2-1 after giving up eight runs off eight hits in only 0.1 innings of work.
UH reliever Justin Vaclavik earned his team-leading fifth save of the season after striking out the side in the ninth inning.
The Cougars continue the series at 7 p.m., Saturday before wrapping up at 1 p.m., Sunday. Both games can be heard live on the Internet at www.UHCougars.com with former Cougar letterwinners Nick Torina and Pat Cauley calling all the action. In addition, Sunday's game can be heard live on KGBC 1540 AM.
Fans also can follow the action by clicking on the "Gametracker" link at www.UHCougars.com.
Following the Cougars' first-inning explosion, the Blazers cut into the Cougar lead in the third inning with three runs, courtesy of an RBI-double from Clint Toomey, Zac Ward's groundout that scored Ryan Metcalf and a Cougar infield error.
UAB (16-6, 3-1 C-USA) continued to chip away in the fifth inning when Ryan Metcalf blasted the first pitch of the inning over the left-field wall.
In the seventh, the Cougars pushed their lead back to four runs. After reaching on a bunt single and moving to second base on a wild pitch, Tully scored two batters later on Lincoln's RBI-single to right field.
However, the Blazers continued to threaten with two more runs in the next half-inning. Bell plated the first run with a two-out single and scored when Rush Knight slapped a double into right field for the final scoring of the night.