Donnie Joseph recorded four strikeouts in the Cougars 9-8 win over Marshall.
April 26, 2009
Charleston, W. Va. - The University of Houston baseball team completed the series sweep over Marshall Sunday afternoon, winning 9-8 in the 10th inning at Appalachian Power Park. It marks their first Conference USA sweep this season and their second overall.
Houston earned the win in extra innings after giving up a 7-0 lead to the Thundering Herd. Marshall battled back to tie the ball game in the eighth inning and after a scoreless ninth, Houston entered the 10th with a chance to regain the lead.
They loaded in the bases in their final at bat, when William Kankel hit a lead-off single to right field and Jake Runte reached on a Marshall throwing error. Marshall tried to put themselves into a situation with the force out at home by intentionally walking Taylor White but Blake Kelso hit a single to right field to score Kankel and put the Cougars back on top. They would then get one more insurance run from Zak Presley when he walked in Runte.
With two outs in the bottom of the 10th, Houston ensured the victory after Kenny Socorro hit an RBI single to center field; Presley then threw the ball to Runte throwing out Eric Semeniuk at third base for the win.
Donnie Joseph earned the win, pitching 2.2 innings, allowing two runs and four strikeouts. Mo Wiley earned the first save of his career after pitching the final 0.2 innings of the ball game. In his fourth straight Sunday start, Wes Musick pitched 6.0 innings, allowing six hits, three runs and three strikeouts. Chris Wright also made an appearance on the mound, going 0.2 innings, allowing three runs.
For the third straight game, Houston scored a run in their opening at bat. Blake Kelso led off with a hard single that bounced off the pitchers glove and rolled to the shortstop. A sacrifice bunt from Zak Presley moved him to second and Dempsay brought him around on a single to right field.
In his second at bat, Kelso continued his solid performance at the plate with a triple to left center to lead off in the third and Zak Presley put two runners on base with a walk. Kelso scored his second run of the afternoon when Dempsay hit into a double play to the shortstop.
The Cougars continued the hitting in the fourth inning. With one out, David Murphy singled up the middle and scored on a double to the left center wall from William Kankel. In the bottom of the inning, Houston got a solid performance out of their defense. With one out and one runner on base, Victor Gomez hit a double deep to center field but Presley and Kelso were able to get the ball in to Chris Wallace at the plate, throwing out Josh Valle for the second out. A ground out to Kelso ended the inning.
Scoring for the third consecutive inning and the fourth of five, Houston put up six runs in the sixth to extend their lead to 6-0. Chase Dempsay started things off reaching base on a fielder's choice. Caleb Ramsey followed that up with a single to left field, moving Dempsay to second and Dempsay would score on a Wallace single to center field. David Murphy would send both Ramsey and Wallace to the plate with a single to left field and Murphy would go to second on an error by left field before Kankel popped up to third base and Jake Runte struck out to end the inning.
The bats continued in the sixth. Taylor White singled to center field and Kelso reached base on a walk before a Presley sacrifice bunt moved them both into scoring position. White would add to the Cougars' lead with single to right field off Dempsay.
The Thundering Herd got on the board in the sixth inning. They scored three runs on four hits to cut the deficit to five, 7-3, before Wes Musick struck out Brandon Casamassima to end the inning. Marshall would go on to pull within one in the seventh inning. With two runners on base and two outs, Victor Gomez hit a three-run home run over the right field fence to cut the Cougars' lead to one, 7-6.
Following the weekend series, the Cougars will travel to McNeese State for a 6:30 p.m. game on Wednesday before returning to Cougar Field to host cross-town rival Rice on May 1-3.