SUGAR LAND, Texas -- No. 25 Houston Baseball used timely hitting and a dominating pitching performance by three Cougars to earn a 3-2 win over Texas for victory No. 20 on the year at Constellation Field in Sugar Land, Texas Tuesday evening.
With the win, the Cougars are now 20-12, while Texas falls to 14-19.
Houston will hit the road this weekend for a three-game series in Storrs, Conn. for American Athletic Conference for UConn. First pitch on Friday is slated for 2 p.m. CT with the series continuing at Noon CT on Saturday and wrapping up at 11 a.m. CT Sunday.
TOP OFFENSIVE PERFORMANCES
Justin Montemayor -- 1-for-3 / RBI
Zac Taylor -- 2-for-4 / 2 R
Michael Pyeatt -- 2-for-5 / RBI
Corey Julks -- 1-for-4 / RBI
Jacob Campbell -- 2-for- 4
Connor Wong -- 1-for-3 / R
Junior Bubba Maxwell (4.1,2,1,1,0,2) made his first career start as a Cougar and showed well, surrendering just one run on two hits with no walks in 4.1 innings, while fanning two. He managed to retire the first 12 batters he faced.
Freshman Trey Cumbie (3.1,3,1,1,1,2) earned his first collegiate win in relief, tossing 3.1 innings, allowing just one run on three hits and a walk with two strikeouts to move to 1-1 on the year.
Junior closer Nick Hernandez (1.1,0,0,0,0,3) continued his strikeout dominance, fanning three in 1.1 innings of work for his team-leading sixth save of 2016.
The Cougars out hit the Longhorns, 9-5 on the evening.
Senior Justin Montemayor drove in the game-winning RBI in the seventh inning to break up the 2-2 tie an finished the night 1-for-3 with an RBI.
Houston jumped out to a two-run lead in the top of the third inning after stringing together a four-hit inning, which included RBI-singles from Pyeatt and Julks -- scoring Taylor and Wong, who each singled to start the scoring threat.
Maxwell shut down Texas in the early going, retiring the first 12 batters he faced, holding the Longhorns without a hit for the first four innings of the game.
Texas would open the bottom of the fifth with a leadoff single, followed by a sacrifice bunt -- leading way to an RBI-double, which made the score a 2-1 game.
Maxwell handed the ball over to Cumbie, who was able to work around a runner at second base with one out and induce a groundout and fly out.
Tied at 2-2, Taylor opens the seventh with bunt single and later came around to score on a Montemayor RBI-single with two outs following an intentional walk to freshman Joe Davis. Houston retook the lead at 3-2 at the stretch.
Cumbie continued to deal, managing to keep the Longhorns at bay even after a one-out single when he induced a 1-3-6 caught stealing pickoff in a crucial spot in the seventh.
With two outs in the bottom of the eighth, Cumbie issues a walk to Texas and hands the ball to teammate Hernandez, who struck out the only hitter he needed to face.
Hernandez returned in the ninth and shut Texas down, 1-2-3 for the save.
Texas reliever Nick Kennedy (2.0,2,1,1,1,1) suffered the loss, surrendering the game-winning RBI-single to Montemayor in the seventh to put the Cougars ahead 3-2 for good.
Head Coach Todd Whitting
On the decision to start Bubba Maxwell and his success tonight
"With Bubba [Maxwell] coming off Tommy John a year ago, we would like to have him pitch for us once a week. We would like to try and stretch him out and get a few more innings out of him if we can. It was good to have him out there and I was proud of what he did.
"He was on fire tonight. That is as good as I have seen Bubba Maxwell. I'm happy for him having come off surgery last year and it's good to see him have success."
On Montemayor's game-winning RBI
"That was a huge hit for us. They have tied the game, but we answered right back with a two-out RBI."
On the team's effort tonight
"The team is playing hard right now. You win or lose that game, you have to tip your cap to the guess because they just played hard."
On the pitching staff's success
"The whole pitching staff does a really good job of suffocating the other team with strikes. They don't fall behind a whole lot and they go right after hitters and when you do that, you can have success."
On the crowd tonight in Sugar Land
"I thought the crowd was outstanding tonight. We had as many Houston fans if not more than UT there tonight. It is great to get out on this side of town and play in front of a very good Alumni group from Fort Bend County. We really enjoy playing out here."
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
BUY SEASON/ SINGLE-GAME / GROUP TICKETS
Houston Baseball has 12 remaining home games at Darryl & Lori Schroeder Park this 2016 season and fans can purchase season tickets for as low as $99 online by visiting UHCougars.com/tickets and following the appropriate links or by clicking here.
To purchase tickets in person, fans can 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.
Houston Baseball will offer variable pricing on its single-game tickets and group rates.
As noted in the table above, variable pricing occurs. For weekday (Tuesday/Wednesday) games, prices range from $5-$7 depending on the choice of seating.
Weekend ((Thursday) Friday-Sunday) online pricing will range from $6-$8 per game.
Group rates are also available (as noted in the table). Weekday (Tuesday/Wednesday) and Weekend ((Thursday) Friday-Sunday) pricing occurs. Groups of 10-24 are set at $4-$5 per person, while groups of 25+ are $3-$4 per person.
All UH main campus students are admitted FREE to regular-season baseball home games with a valid student ID.
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.