McNeese uses late 10 run outburst to win at Houston, 13-5
HOUSTON – McNeese senior right handed pitcher Aidan Anderson had a fantastic night on the mound pitching in relief and the Cowboys exploded for 10 runs in the 14th inning to defeat the Houston Cougars 13-5 in 14 innings at Don Sanders Field Wednesday night.
“When I came in and the game was close, my job as a relief pitcher is just to keep it close,” said Anderson. “After we tied it up I just had to not give any runs up.”
“That was a warrior effort by Aidan,” said head coach Justin Hill. “We brought him in when the game was close at 3-1 because we knew we needed to keep it close going into the ninth and he did a good job of keeping the score there.
“After we tied it up he didn’t want to come out the game and he did a good job of keeping his pitch count low and hanging zeros.”
The Cougars would score the first run of the game in the third inning after second baseman Brad Burckel hit an RBI single into left field to take a 1-0 lead.
Two innings later, the Cougars would extend their lead to 3-0 after a two-run home run to center field by first baseman Joe Davis for his second of the year.
The Cowboys would respond in the very next half inning by picking up their first run of the night after drawing four total walks, the last walk was earned by Austin Nelson who would be credited with the RBI and help cut the Houston lead to 3-1.
The scoring was quit till the top of the ninth, then the Cowboys bats would come alive.
After Nelson was set down to lead off, the inning, sophomore shortstop Reid Bourque hit a double down the right field line, Fisbeck reached base on a throwing error by the Houston shortstop giving the Cowboys a man on second and third with only one out and true freshman Payton Harden coming to the plate.
Harden is no stranger to hitting well with men in scoring position, he drove in a crucial run on opening day to take the lead against UTSA back on February 15 and he would come up big for the Cowboys again tonight. With his first hit of the night he would drive in both runners on base with an RBI double into the right center outfield gap to tie the game at three runs.
The game would stay 3-3 till the top of the 14th inning when senior center fielder Shane Selman would hit an RBI single up the middle of the infield to take the 4-3 lead.
The Cowboys would then open the flood gates and explode for nine more runs before the end of the inning.
After getting the bases loaded, Houston’s pitcher Sean Bretz would balk, forcing a run home making it 5-3.
Then, after intentionally walking Carson Maxwell to load the bases, Peyton Johnson would lay down a perfect sacrifice bunt to push the score to 6-3.
Austin Nelson was next to bat and he would deliver for a two-RBI single up the middle of the infield to push the Cowboy lead to 8-3.
Nate Fisbeck then tied the McNeese single game record for most hits in a game with his fifth hit of the game making it 10-3.
The Cowboys final three runs would come from an RBI walk by Selman and a two-RBI single from Clayton Rasbeary to make the score 13-3.
McNeese’s stat line in the top of the 14th inning was 10 runs, on five hits, and seven walks.
In the bottom of the inning the Cougars would put up two runs of their own before the final out and making the final score 13-5.
Anderson finished the game with 5.2 innings pitched, gave up no runs, one hit, fanned four batters, and picked up the win for his first of the season.
The Cowboys top hitters of the night were second baseman Nate Fisbeck (5-7, 3 R, 2 RBI, 1 SB), Payton Harden (2-6, 2 R, 2 RBI), and Shane Selman (2-7, 1 R, 1 2B, 2 RBI, 1 SB).
“Nate Fisbeck, I think set the tone today offensively with five hits and we just kept getting ourselves in situations to get the big hit and it just wasn’t going our way early,” said Hill. “But I think in the big inning (14th) the guys really worked in their at bats and earned every single hit and walk.”
The Cowboys will be back at home come the weekend when they host Creighton and Texas State in the Lake Area Classic at Joe Miller Ballpark.
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