Lions drop series opener to No. 20-ranked Houston

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HAMMOND, La. – No. 20-ranked Houston jumped out to an early lead Thursday and made it hold up, defeating Southeastern Louisiana, 6-3, in non-conference action at Pat Kenelly Diamond at Alumni Field.

Trey Cumbie (6-3) earned the win for Houston (33-20), allowing two runs – one earned – in 6.1 innings of work. The left-hander scattered five hits and three walks, striking out eight batters. Joey Pulido picked up the final out of the game to earn his fifth save of the season.

Josh Green (6-5) suffered the loss for Southeastern (35-20), surrendering four runs – three earned – in five innings. The senior right-hander from Baton Rouge, Louisiana allowed nine hits and issued a pair of walks, striking out two.

Evan Pace (2-for-4) and Taylor Schwaner (2-for-3) turned in multi-hit performances, with Pace also scoring two of the Lions’ three runs.

The Cougars scored an unearned run in the first inning and tacked on three more runs in the third, taking an insurmountable 4-0 lead before Southeastern picked up its first hit of the game.

Cody Grosse led off the fourth with a single to right, the Lions’ first hit, and then stole second base. After Nathan Pilutti drew a walk, putting a pair on with no outs, Drew Avans grounded into a double play. Grosse advanced to third on the play and then scored on Kyle Schimpf’s RBI single to right field.

Southeastern scored an unearned run in the fifth.

Pace led off the inning with the first of his two hits in the game, singling to center. He advanced to second after the shortstop muffed a throw on a pickoff attempt. After Schwaner walked, Brennan Breaud sacrificed both into scoring position. Trenon Trosclair was hit by a pitch, loading the bases, before Grosse grounded out to first. Pace scored on the play.

As the Lions clawed closer, Payton Robinson and Kade Granier came out of the bullpen to shut down the Houston hitters.

The Cougars broke through for a pair of insurance runs in the ninth, but Southeastern was not done.

Pace and Schwaner knocked back-to-back singles in the ninth and Breaud was hit by a pitch, loading the bases with no outs, but a double play stalled the rally despite plating a run.

Friday at 6 p.m., the Lions will send redshirt junior right-hander Carlisle Koestler (7-1, 2.95), who leads the Southland Conference in wins, to the mound in the final home game of the season. Houston has not announced a starting pitcher for the finale.

The game can be heard in the Hammond area on KSLU 90.9 FM, and worldwide online or through either the Radio FX or TuneIn apps. Fans can also keep up with all the action through streaming video, live statistics or by following @SLUathletics on Twitter. Links to audio, video, stats, promotions and tickets are available on the baseball schedule page at www.LionSports.net.

TICKETS
Single game tickets for Lion home games can be purchased online at www.LionSports.net/Tickets or by contacting the athletics ticket office at (985) 549-5466.

General Admission tickets are $9 for adults and $6 for children (ages 3-12). Tax is included in the price of admission. Southeastern students are admitted free with a valid university ID card.

Students, campus organizations and fans can earn points toward their Lion Up Loyalty account at any home game by checking in on the mobile app while in attendance.

SOUTHLAND CONFERENCE TOURNAMENT
Southeastern will be the No. 2 seed in next week’s Southland Conference Baseball Tournament at Constellation Field in Sugar Land, Texas, squaring off against the No. 7 seed (TBA) at 12 p.m. Wednesday.

Tickets for the 2018 Southland Conference Baseball Tournament are on sale now at www.southland.org/baseball. They are also available by phone at 281-240-4487, and at the TDECU Ticket Office at Constellation Field.

The double-elimination tournament, scheduled for May 23-26 in Sugar Land, Texas, will feature the league’s top eight teams and conclude with a winner-take-all championship game May 26 at 6 p.m. The winner of the tournament will receive the Southland’s automatic bid to the NCAA tournament.

DIAMOND CLUB / S CLUB
Fans interested in becoming active supporters of the baseball program are encouraged to join the Diamond Club. Lion baseball alums are encouraged to join the exclusive S Club, which is restricted to Southeastern athletic letter winners. S Club members also gain membership in the Diamond Club.

All membership fees and donations to both the Diamond Club and S Club (baseball) are available for the exclusive use of the Southeastern baseball program. Membership information is available by contacting the Lion Athletics Association at [email protected] or (985) 549-5091.

SOCIAL MEDIA
For more information on Lions Baseball, follow @Lions_Baseball on Twitter, @SLU_LionsBaseball on Instagram, like /SLUathletics on Facebook and subscribe to the SLUathletics YouTube channel.

Houston 6, Southeastern 3
(May 17, 2018 at Hammond, La.)
———————————————————————-
Houston…………… 103 000 002 – 6 12 1 (33-20)
Southeastern……. 000 110 001 – 3 7 2 (35-20)
———————————————————————-
Pitchers: Houston – Cumbie, Trey; Henry, Carter (7); Pulido, Joey (9) and Lovelace, Kyle. Southeastern – Green, Josh; Robinson, Payton (6); Granier, Kade (7) and Pace, Evan.

Win-Cumbie, Trey (6-3) Save-Pulido, Joey (5) Loss-Green, Josh (6-5) T-2:58 A-1228
Weather: Clear 92, WNW 10 mph

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