May 18, 2013
HOUSTON - Playing down to the final out in its home finale, Houston Baseball scratched two runs across in the ninth, but would drop a 6-5 heartbreaker to Southern Miss on Saturday afternoon to wrap up the 2013 regular season.
Win: Jake Drehoff (4-5)
Loss: Aaron Garza (5-5)
Save: Cody Livingston (1)
NUMBERS OF NOTE
14 Sophomore Michael Pyeatt extended his on-base streak to 14 straight games with two walks today.
23 With his third-inning triple, freshman>Kyle Survance extended his consecutive games of reaching base safely streak to 23 - a season-high for Houston.
23 Houston wrapped up the 2013 regular season with 23 home wins - the most since winning 24 at Cougar Field back in 2008.
The Cougars head into the C-USA Championship next week with a 35-20 overall record and a 13-11 mark in Conference USA play after winning the three final series to end the year. The 23 home wins for the Cougars this season was the most since winning 24 at Cougar Field back in 2008. Houston finished 23-9 this year in front of a home crowd.
Houston tallied 11 hits on the day, led by a multi-hit effort by five Cougars. Leading the charge was freshman>Justin Montemayor (2x4, 2 RBI) with two RBI on two hits, while juniors>Caleb Barker (2x3, R, RBI),>Jonathan Davis (2x4, RBI) and freshman>Josh Vidales (2x5, R, RBI) each drove in an RBI with two hits.
Freshman>Kyle Survance (1x5, R, 3B) tripled and scored a run to extend his active on-base streak to 23 straight games, while sophomore Michael Pyeatt walked twice to extend his streak to 14 straight games.
The Cougars tripled for the 25th time this season and are now just two shy of the single-season record of 27 set back in 1990.
Houston freshman reliever>Jake Lemoine (5.0,7,1,1,1,3) tossed 5.0 strong innings out of the bullpen, allowing just one run on seven hits and one walk with three strikeouts. Senior>Matt Hernandez (1.1,1,0,0,0,2) struck out two and surrendered just one hit in 1.1 innings to finish the game for the Cougars.
Starter>Aaron Garza (2.2,6,5,5,1,1) would suffer the loss, falling to 5-5 on the year after allowing five runs on six hits and one walk with one strikeout in his 2.2 innings.
Southern Miss opened with a two-spot in the top of the first, following a two-run homerun, but the Cougars made it a ballgame with their own two-spot following back-to-back RBI by Montemayor and Barker.
The Golden Eagles struck for three more runs in the second and third to regain the lead at 5-2 after four hits in the next two frames.
Houston scored in the third when Survance roped a one-out triple to dead centerfield and scored on a Montemayor RBI-infield single.
Southern Miss scratched across an insurance run in the seventh with a solo homerun with two outs. Houston continued to fight in the ninth when Barker opened the frame with a leadoff single, moved up a base on a walk by Pyeatt. Davis then followed up with an RBI-single into right center, scoring Barker. Vidales' fielder's choice would plate Pyeatt to make it a one-run game.
Southern Miss reliever Cody Livingston (0.2,0,0,0,0,1) was able to escape a bases loaded inherited jam and earn the save in the ninth. Starter Jake Drehoff (8.0,9,3,3,1,5) worked 8.0 innings, allowing three runs on nine hits and one walk with five strikeouts for the win to improve to 4-5.
HOUSTON HEAD COACH Todd Whitting
Thoughts on the game
"We played hard today. Things didn't go our way from the start. We didn't get timely hits today, despite having 11. I am proud of the way we settled down on the bump, and kept playing hard. We never quit and played until the final out. We made it really interesting in the last inning and were one swing away from winning the game. That's what I love about this team. They always play hard, and that's going to pay dividends for them next week. "
On heading into the conference tournament next week
"It's a wide open field. It's one of those tournaments that anybody who is in has the ability to win it. I have no idea when we are playing or who we are playing. To me it doesn't matter if we play the way we've been playing, we'll win it."
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Houston will head across town next week to take part in the 2013 C-USA Baseball Championship at Reckling Park. Houston will serve as the No. 6 seed in the tournament and will be paired with No. 2 seed Southern Miss, No. 3 seed East Carolina and No. 7 seed Tulane. The Cougars will have Wednesday off and begin play at 11 a.m. on Thursday vs. East Carolina. The Cougars will continue play at 3 p.m. Friday vs. Southern Miss and 3 p.m. Saturday vs. Tulane.