Baseball Explodes for 16 Hits at Saint Louis in Series Finale
April 18, 2004
ST. LOUIS, Mo. - Senior Thanos Papavasiliou went 4-for-5 with a run and two RBIs to lead an offensive attack which pounded out a season-best 16 hits for the second straight day as the University of Houston baseball team took a 9-3 win over Saint Louis in the finale of a Conference USA series at Billiken Sports Center on Sunday afternoon.
Papavasiliou was part of a Cougar offensive explosion which saw all but one starter rap out at least one hit in the game with five players recording at least two hits in the game. Cole Bruce continued his recent hot hitting, batting 3-for-5 with two runs, while Stuart Musslewhite and Nick Bott each posted two hits apiece.
In addition, Musslewhite extended his UH season-best hitting streak to 11 straight games.
Making his first career start, UH righthander Austin Sumerlin earned the win after holding Saint Louis to only two hits in four shutout innings. Through his first 10 innings pitched of the 2004 season, the sophomore has yet to allow a run, the longest active streak by any Cougar pitcher and the second-longest streak of the year.
SLU starter Ryan Bird dropped to 1-4 after giving up six runs off 10 hits with a strikeout in 3.2 innings.
Ryan Eder went 3-for-4 to lead Saint Louis, which managed only seven hits against four Cougar pitchers in the game.
The Cougars (14-21) continue their season at 2 p.m., Tuesday when they meet Texas-San Antonio at Roadrunner Field in San Antonio, Texas. The game can be heard live on 88.3 FM KAXF or over the Internet at www.UHCougars.com with Chris Burkhalter and Pat Cauley calling the action.
Fans also can follow the action through live stats by clicking on the Gametracker at the bottom of the main page at www.UHCougars.com.
As they did in Saturday's win, the Cougars struck for the game's first runs in their first at-bats. Rob Johnson laced a one-out single to right field and moved to second on Cole Bruce's single up the middle. After Stuart Musslewhite reached on a fielder's choice, Kevin Roberts slapped an RBI-single up the middle to plate Bruce. Thanos Papavasiliou followed with an RBI-single to left field to score Musslewhite and give the Cougars a 2-0 lead.
The score remained that way until the fourth inning when the Cougars struck for three more runs. Johnson again started the rally with a one-out single and moved up a base on Bruce's single. Stuart Musslewhite then slapped a single through the left side to plate Johnson and Bruce added another run for the Cougars when SLU left fielder Johnny Sweeney's throw to catcher Casey Moore went wide. After Kevin Roberts was hit by a pitch, Papavasiliou laced an RBI-single into left field to score Roberts.
Nick Bott followed with a two-run homer over the left field wall to give the Cougars a 7-0 lead.
Saint Louis struck for a pair of runs in the fifth inning, thanks to a hit and two UH errors. Aaron Thompson's groundout plated Casey Moore, who led off with a single, for the first run, and Jon Guyre scored when Pat Steinhoff reached on the second Cougar error of the inning.
The Billikens struck for another run in the sixth inning after Kyle Wort scored on the Cougars' fourth error of the day and threatened for more, loading the bases with two outs, but UH reliever Rickey Putman struck out Aaron Thompson to end the rally.
In the seventh inning, the Cougars struck for two more runs. After Papavasiliou's single, back-to-back infield singles from Bott and Matt Farrington and a double play put runners on second and third, Travis Tully laced a single into left center to plate both runners.