PREVIEW: Baseball Set for Weekend Home Series

March 20, 2014

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HOUSTON – Looking for its fifth weekend series win of the season, No. 21 Houston Baseball welcomes College of Charleston to Cougar Field for a three-game set, beginning Friday at 6:30 p.m. The series will continue on Saturday at 6:30 p.m. and conclude on Sunday at 11:30 a.m.

Watch Live: All three games will be available via a live web stream on UHCougars.com for a small fee.
Listen Live: All three games will be FREE to listen over UHCougars.com
GameTracker: All three of games will be available on GameTracker.

Houston is coming off a 1-1 week with a win over Texas Southern on Wednesday. In that win, the Cougars notched their seventh shutout of the season, led by freshman Kirby Peek and junior Jared Robinson’s combined two-hitter. Senior Casey Grayson drove in the game’s lone run on a walk-off, RBI-single in the 10th.  

No. 21 Houston enters the weekend series with a 16-4 overall record and a 12-1 mark at Cougar Field. The Cougars have won five of the last six and have recorded seven shutouts – the most since totaling eight in 2002.

The Houston pitching staff still remains in control with its 1.56 season ERA. The Cougars have fanned 137 in 179.0 innings, while walking just 29 – holding opponents to a .198 average.

Leading the way for the starters is junior Aaron Garza, who is 5-0 with a 0.97 ERA. In 37.0 innings, he has fanned 23 and walked just two. Sophomore Jake Lemoine is 3-1 with a 1.07 ERA. He paces the team with 26 strikeouts in his 33.2 innings tossed.

Out of the pen, Houston has relied heavily on the arms of seniors Chase Wellbrock, who in seven appearances and 12. innings, has five saves and 16 strikeouts for a 0.00 ERA, while Tyler Ford is 2-0 with one save and a 0.55 ERA in nine appearances.

Houston’s offense is hitting .280, led by senior Frankie Ratcliff’s .350 average, taeam-leading 28 hits, 16 runs scored and nine stolen bases. He is followed by senior Caleb Barker, who has reached base in all 20 games this season, holding an average of .311 to accompany his team-best 14 RBI, while sophomore Kyle Survance is hitting .309 with 11 RBI and 25 hits – recording a hit in 13 of the last 14 games.

The offense has notched 95 walks and has swiped 23-of-25 stolen bases.

College of Charleston, a member of the Colonel Athletic Association, comes into the weekend series having been recognized over the season as a Top 25 contender, holding a record of 16-4 with a series win over then No. 12 North Carolina and  a two-game sweep of Michigan to head into the weekend having won the last three.

The Cougars are led by a solid pitching rotation in RHP Bailey Ober, who paces the team in ERA with a 1.24 and a 4-0 record. In 29.0 innings, Ober has fanned 27 and has held opponents to a .168 average. RHP Taylor Clarke is 4-1 with a 2.00 ERA through 27.0 innings and five starts, while RHP Nathan Helvey is 2-1 with a 5.74 ERA in seven appearances.

Out of the pen, RHP Michael Hanzlik has recorded a team-best five saves in his 10 appearances out of the pen. The staff has recorded 146 strikeouts to its 53 walks, while holding opponents to a .235 clip.

College of Charleston’s offense is hitting .274, led by Blake Butler’s .349 average, team-best 29 hits and 19 runs scored. Carl Wise follows with a .338 clip and team-leading 22 RBI, while Ben Boykin is hitting .308.

The Cougars are slugging .398 and have notched 22-of-29 stolen bases and just 20 errors for a .974 fielding percentage.


  • Houston and College of Charleston will meet for the first time in program history this weekend.
  • The Cougars will play five first-time opponents this season.
  • This weekend marks the second straight weekend for Houston Baseball vs. a first-time opponent after the Cougars swept Towson at Cougar Field last weekend.

Friday, March 21
Houston: RHP Aaron Garza (Jr., Galveston, Texas) – 0.97 ERA, 5-0, 37.0 IP, 2 BB, 23 K
College of Charleston: RHP Taylor Clark (So., Ashburn, Va.) – 2.00 ERA, 4-1, 27.0 IP, 8 BB, 21 K

Saturday, March 22
Houston: RHP Jake Lemoine (So., Bridge City, Texas) – 1.07 ERA, 3-1, 33.2 IP, 6 BB, 26 K
College of Charleston: RHP Bailey Ober (Fr., Huntersville, N.C.) – 1.24 ERA, 4-0, 29.0 IP, 0 BB, 27 K

Sunday, March 23
Houston: TBA
College of Charleston: RHP Nathan Helvey (So., Fort Mill, S.C.) – 5.74 ERA, 2-1, 26.2 IP, 9 BB, 22 K

Friday, March 21 - FRIDAY FRENZY

  • $1 hot dogs, $2 soda, $3 beer* (21 years or older) EVERY Friday night at Cougar Field
  • Inflatable games for kids

Saturday, March 22 – BALLPARK BINGO

  • Win great prizes by playing Ballpark Bingo!
  • Inflatable games for Kids

Sunday, March 23 - KIDS DAY

  • KidZone & Inflatable Games for Kids
  • Kids Run the Bases post-game
  • Post-Game autographs

By visiting UHCougars.com, clicking the Tickets link, and then Purchase Tickets, while following the appropriate links to the Baseball page or by clicking here, fans can begin purchasing tickets for single games at Cougar Field this season.

Tickets for the Cougar Spring Fling, good for general admission to both events, are just $5 prior to April 11 and $10 on April 11. CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE TICKETS FOR THE COUGAR SPRING FLING.

Tickets can be purchased in advance through UHCougars.com or by calling the Houston Athletics Ticket Office at 713-462-6647. Tickets on the day of the event can be purchased at the Houston Athletics Ticket Office, located in the Athletics/Alumni Center at 3100 Cullen Blvd., or at the event’s entrances beginning at 5 p.m.

All Houston Baseball season ticket holders and single game reserved seat ticket holders ($12-15) will be admitted into Cougar Spring Fling with their previously purchased tickets. All seating at the Houston Football Spring Game will be general admission.

Cash parking for the Spring Fling will be available in the Houston Football Stadium parking garage and in lot 16C located across from Cougar Field on Cullen Blvd.

Families can purchase the Family Plan for just $399, which includes two adult and two youth General Admission tickets to each of the 33 home games.

General Admission seats include 33 "Anytime Tickets". You may use one ticket to each home game, 33 tickets to one game, or any combination in between.

General Admission season tickets start for as low as $150 (33 home games/$4.50 per ticket), while Reserved season tickets start at only $200 (33 home games/$6.00 per ticket).

To purchase, visit the Tickets tab, Purchase Tickets, while following the appropriate links to the Baseball page under Season Tickets or by clicking here.

For questions or concerns, call or visit the Athletics Ticket Office at 713-GO-COOGS (462-6647) or 877-COUGAR-5 (268-4275).

KIDS (8th grade & younger) with CAMP T-SHIRT GET IN FREE
Kids who show up to Cougar Field in a UH Baseball Camp T-Shirt and are in the eighth grade or younger will receive FREE ADMISSION to any Houston Baseball home game.

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.

Following the weekend series with College of Charleston, Houston will host Rice for its second game of the Silver Glove Series on Tuesday, March 25 at 6:30 p.m. at Cougar Field.   



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