Tulane splits action-packed doubleheader at Houston

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Kody Hoese
(Photo: Parker Waters)

HOUSTON, Texas – Looking to avoid another loss after a late-inning rally, the Tulane Green Wave baseball team tied the game with a pair of runs in the ninth and went into extra innings plating four more to defeat the Houston Cougars 9-7 Sunday morning at Schroeder Park in Houston.

In a game that took five hours to complete, including a delay due to the lights turning off, the Green Wave (29-21, 11-8 American) produced 11 hits in the victory, taking the lead three times on the night in another tense back-and-forth battle against the Cougars (30-19, 10-10) that needed to go down to the wire to earn the split of the day’s action.

Kody Hoese finished the game going 3-for-5 with two RBI and three runs scored, followed by Grant Mathews who drove in four on a pair of hits against Houston.

Josh Bates (3-0), who pitched for the second time on the day, earned the win allowing two runs on a hit with a pair of strikeouts, while Krishna Raj (1) earned his first collegiate save as he closed the door in the 10th.

Fred Villarreal (5-3), who earned the win in the first game Saturday, suffered the loss this time around as he allowed four runs on a hit with two walks in only a third of an inning pitched. Grayson Padgett drove in three on two hits for the Cougars.

After two scoreless innings, Hoese dropped a single between three Houston defenders down the right field line after an out. Walks to Hudson Haskin and Jonathon Artigues loaded the bases, as Mathews flew out to center to score Hoese and give Tulane a 1-0 lead.

Houston tied the game in the bottom of the fourth after a pair of hits, and in the fifth plated another as Trent Johnson came on for starter Keagan Gillies and got out of the inning without further damage as the team trailed the Cougars 2-1.

With an out in the top of the sixth, Kobi Owen hit a towering home run to left field to tie the game once again with the score at 2-2. Trevor Jensen singled to center to put two on for the Green Wave, as Hoese poked one through the right side to plate Sal Gozzo to put Tulane back on top 3-2.

Johnson mowed through Houston batters until finding some trouble in the bottom of the seventh, as with two outs the Cougars loaded the bases after consecutive walks with Brendan Cellucci coming on in relief. The Cougars would get the tying run, but Ryan Green would come on to get the final out of the inning to keep the game at 3-3.

With two runners on base, Justin Campbell came in for Green and got a strikeout before a single scored a run to put Houston ahead 4-3. C.J. Whelan came on and after a hit batter a single through the left side plated another run to make it 5-3 Cougars.

A leadoff walk to Hoese in the ninth opened the inning, as Haskin legged out an infield single to put two on. After a strikeout, Mathews singled to right center to score Hoese and put Tulane behind by just a run, as Luke Glancy grounded out to second base to plate Haskin to tie the game at 5-5.

After a walk to open the bottom half of the ninth, Bates came in for Whelan and got the next two batters out in order. An intentional walk put two on, with another walk loading the bases, but Bates got a strikeout to end the inning to send the game to extras.

Frankie Niemann drew a walk to open the Tulane 10th, as Gozzo and Neimann were both safe after the sacrifice bunt attempt. Jensen was hit by a pitch to load the bases, as Hoese singled through the left side to give Tulane the lead up 6-5.

Haskin flew out left to score Gozzo for the sacrifice fly to push the Green Wave lead to 7-5. A balk advanced runners to second and third, leaving a base open for Artigues who was intentionally walked. Mathews came through again with a single up the middle to plate two more to put the Tulane lead at 9-5.

After a 16-minute delay due to the lights turning of at the field, Houston scratched across two more runs, but that would be all as Raj got the final two batters of the game to fly out to end the game to secure the win for the Green Wave.

Game 1: Houston 12, Tulane 7

The Tulane Green Wave baseball team battled through three ties and a pair of lead changes, but a five-run eighth by the Houston Cougars put the game out of reach as the squad fell in the first game of Saturday’s doubleheader 12-7 at Sanders Field at Schroeder Park.

After the visitors took a sizeable lead, the Green Wave (28-21, 10-8 American) roared back to plate five runs in the third and score runs in the fourth to tie the game and in the seventh to take the lead, but the Cougars (30-18, 10-9) refused to quit in knotting the game again in the seventh before taking the lead for good in the eighth.

Junior Kody Hoese jumped right back into the national home run race as he drilled a pair of home runs to sit at 23 on the year with three RBI and two runs scored. Hoese is now in a three-way tie for third in the single-season home run mark at Tulane, while also moving back into the joint lead for the lead nationally.

Hudson Haskin hit his 16th double of the year among his pair of hits and a run scored, while Sal Gozzo drove in a run and scored once with two hits. Jonathon Artigues hit his third home run of the season for his only hit of the game.

Starter Kaleb Roper withstood the early Houston onslaught and finished the day striking out eight in 6.2 innings, as Justin Campbell (1-3) suffered the loss allowing two runs on a hit with a walk.

Houston finished the game with 13 hits, getting three from Derrick Cherry and Jared Triolo. Triolo drove in three and scored twice, while Brad Burckel and Tyler Bielamowicz each drove in two. Fred Villarreal (5-2) was the last Cougar pitcher used as he benefited from the late Houston runs to earn the win in pitching the final 2.1 innings and allowed just two hits with a strikeout.

Houston opened its blistering start by getting a run in the opening frame, pushing across four more in the bottom of the second to jut out to an early 5-0 advantage.

Undeterred, Tulane took to the top of the third and got a leadoff double from Owen down the left field line, moving to second after a Gozzo sacrifice bunt that put runners at the corner after a fielding error.

Trevor Jensen flew out to left to bring in the first Green Wave run to make it 5-1. Hoese did his first bit of damage as he belted one out to the batter’s eye in center for the two-run shot to make it 5-3. Haskin doubled to left center and Artigues did his part to clear the bases with a two-run shot of his own to right to tie the game with the Cougars at 5-5.

Houston plated another run on a solo home run in the bottom half of the frame to go back on top 6-5, as in the very next half inning Grant Mathews opened with a double down the right field line to open the next Tulane round of bats. After a strikeout, Gozzo singled up the middle to score Mathews to knot the game at 6-6.

It would be some innings before someone broke the tie, and Hoese was the player to do it as he went opposite field for his second home run of the game in the seventh to give Tulane its first lead of the day going up 7-6.

Unfortunately, Houston tied the game again in the bottom of the frame, and then the floodgates opened in the eighth as the Cougars scored five more in the inning to give Tulane just three outs to work with in the ninth.

Game three of the series is set for a 2 p.m. first pitch on Sunday in Houston.

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