Breaking News 1,800 miles from Houston in Providence, Rhode Island . . . Joe Davis after a spectacular week has earned a spot on the American Athletic Conference (AAC) weekly baseball honors list for the week ending February 24 . . . This is what the official release had to say about the Cougar first baseman:
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Joe Davis * Sr. * 1B * Houston Davis hit three home runs and had seven RBIs, as Houston took two of three in a series against No. 24 Arizona. The senior finished 6-for-17 (.352) with five of his hits going for extra bases. He began the week with a 3-for-6 performance and four RBIs against McNeese State Wednesday. Davis hit a go-ahead home run in the eighth inning Friday night in Houston’s 2-1 win over the Wildcats in the series opener. He ended his week with a double, home run and two RBIs Sunday.
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This note does not include the fact that in Saturday evenings affair at Schroeder Park, the Arizona Wildcats wanted no part of Joe Davis, and in his first three plate appearances he was intentionally walked twice and hit by a pitch once . . . Kudos to Joe Davis, well deserved.
For the second day in a row the Arizona Wildcats would strike in the first inning . . . But the Cougars would respond differently on Sunday at Schroeder Park in the finale of their three game series win . . . Rather than a quick and furious comeback as we saw Saturday night, the Cougars would be stymied by some odd baseball and some solid opposing pitching.
Starting pitcher Lael Lockhart Jr. would allow two runs in the first, but would get 1-2-3 innings in the second and third and he would work out of a little trouble in the fourth . . . But the fifth inning would be end of the road for Sunday’s starter . . . Lockhart would exit as his pitch count had reached 84 and he had labored as Arizona manufactured baserunners, and runs as a result . . . Relievers Carter Henry and Brayson Hurdsman would enter the game, but the result was no different as some odd plays would help the Wildcats build up a 9-1 lead by the end of the inning.
Joe Davis would get the first hit for the Cougars in the fourth inning on a leadoff homerun . . . The Coogs would get two consecutive singles after the Davis homerun and Arizona would go to the bullpen . . . The Wildcats bullpen would keep down the trailing Cougars, limiting them to a two-run seventh inning and not much else . . . Arizona would use five pitchers to defeat the Cougars 9-4.
The Wildcats came to town ranked #24 in the country, they will not be ranked after this weekend . . . The Cougars now have an off day before taking on Lamar over in Beaumont on Tuesday. –
The Houston Cougars put on a variety of impressive displays on Saturday night at Schroeder as they hosted the Arizona Wildcats for the second straight night.
Ryan Randel gave up a run in the first, and he would scatter three hits over the next five innings . . . In the fifth Randel surrendered a two-out two-run homerun to cut the Cougar lead to 6-3 . . . After a long sixth inning which would push Randel’s pitch total to 90, his terrific outing would end as the Cougars went to the bullpen.
Arizona would get on the scoreboard first . . . But the Coogs would load the bases in the second with the help of two walks by Wildcats starting pitcher Andrew Nardi . . . Jared Triolo would clear the bases on a double to put the Coogs up 5-1.
Tyler Bielamowicz hit a homerun to leadoff the third inning and that would help to chase Nardi one batter later as he reached 60 pitches in the contest . . . Bielamowicz would also play a little “addition by subtraction” in the seventh by going up the left field wall on a long drive by Matthew Dyer to bring a would-be homerun down for a long out.
Devon Roedahl would take the mound in the top of the eighth and the Wildcats would crawl closer on three straight hits, capped off by a Cameron Cannon homerun to center . . . Cannon entered the series hitting .632 and had been kept at bay up to that point in the series . . . Roedahl would gather himself to get strikeouts for all three out to end the top of the eighth . . . A tense top of the ninth would yield a run before Roedahl closed out the Wildcats . . . The Cougars would win the game and the series with a final score of 9-7.
The Cougars and the Wildcats return to action on Sunday, thirty minutes later than a usual Sunday start, at 1:30pm . . . Bring your brooms and be loud.
The Houston Cougars played host to the 24th ranked Arizona Wildcats on Friday evening at Schroeder Park under a humid, foggy, bleak-looking sky . . . The Wildcats opened the weekend at 5-0 and with an offense that had scored 85 runs in their first five games.
The first three and a half innings went by extremely quickly. Then in the Cougars half of the fourth after two quick outs, the Coogs put the brakes on the game and slowed it down considerably . . . An infield single was followed by a walk, which was followed by a mound visit, then came a game-tying single by Kobe Hyland, and finally a strikeout to close out the inning . . . . Arizona starting pitcher Randy Labaut had been fairly efficient to that point, but by the time the inning was over he had thrown over twenty pitches to finish with 54 pitches thru four.
Tyler Bielamowicz was brilliant over six innings, allowing only a Blake Paugh solo homerun in the third, striking out five and throwing 94 pitches . . . Labaut was equally impressive as he would throw 107 pitches over 7 1/3 innings giving up six hits and the only two runs the Coogs would put on the board.
Joe Davis would go 1-for-4 on the night, but the one was a massive one . . . With one out and the scored tied at 1 in the bottom of the eighth, Davis hit a 2-2 pitch through the dense Houston air to left-center field and it would clear the fence to give the Cougars the lead going to the ninth.
Right-hander Fred Villarreal would close out the game in the ninth with eight pitches to the top of the Wildcats order, and that was that . . . The Wildcats had only two hits in the game as they lost for the first time this season to go to 5-1 in a game that did not last three hours.
The three game series resumes Saturday night at Schroeder Park, with a slightly later than usual start at 7:30pm to accommodate fans attending the men’s basketball game also on campus Saturday afternoon. –
The Houston Cougars welcomed the McNeese State Cowboys to Schroeder Park on a cool yet perfect Wednesday evening . . . The game would go fourteen innings, but the number that best explains this mid-week affair is ten: McNeese would score ten runs in the fourteenth inning, and the Cougars would use ten pitchers in the game.
Clay Aguilar got the Wednesday night start on the mound for the Cougars . . . Aguilar would labor a bit with 21 pitches in the opening frame while striking out the side without yielding any runs . . . Aguilar would exit after three innings having struck out six while throwing 48 total pitches.
The Coogs were first on the scoreboard in the third on a single to left that was slightly misplayed, however the runner on second was likely to have scored anyway on the base hit . . . The game was still close at 1-0 when Joe Davis crushed a two-run homerun to center field to give the Coogs a little breathing room.
The sixth inning was problematic for the Cougars . . . McNeese would be the recipient of fours walks, and they would score a run without getting a hit in the inning . . . Tristen Bayless was called out of the bullpen to put an end to the threat, he would get the final out of the inning on a called third strike.
McNeese would tie the game at three in the top of the ninth and a scoreless bottom half of the inning would send the game to extras . . . The bullpen was holding up quite well, minimizing threats and pushing the game five extra innings, that is when the fourteenth inning happened.
The Cowboys would break through in the 14th when they would put together a run scoring inning which began with a single up the middle off of Houston reliever Nolan Bond to plate the go ahead run . . . The inning unraveled further after a new reliever, Sean Bretz, would balk to force in a run, then a suicide squeeze scored another run, and finally another base hit would plate two more . . . Tanner Green would come in from the bullpen and promptly allow a two-run base hit and then a bases loaded walk followed by another two-run base hit . . . By the time all was said and done, McNeese would score ten runs in their half of the fourteenth.
The Coogs were not done yet, as Joe Davis would again hit a drive to center, this time for a double that would drive home two runs . . . And that was that . . . The 13-5 final score indicates a more lopsided game than the five hour affair actually was.
The Cougars now have an off day, a good thing after playing fourteen innings, before playing host to the Arizona Wildcats for a three game series starting Friday at 6:30pm, gates open at 4:30pm . . . Also, if you want to attend Saturday’s ballgame, be sure to note a later than usual Saturday start time of 7:30pm. –
Just in . . . weather has forced a change in this Houston Cougars baseball schedule this week.
The Coogs were to play McNeese in Lake Charles, Louisiana on Tuesday (tomorrow), but weather has changed things . . . The game will now be played at Schroeder Park, but not on Tuesday, instead it will be played on Wednesday at 6:30pm . . . The schools are trading home dates, so the Coogs will no longer have a home game on March 19, but will instead travel to Louisiana on that day instead.
So if you did not already have Wednesday night plans, now you do . . . see you at the ballpark at 6:30 as the Coogs seek to start the season 3-1.
A breezy, 63 degree, sunless afternoon gave way to some sun rays but not much offense at Schroeder Park on Sunday . . . Houston and Northwestern State would play eleven innings and would score a total of three runs between them.
Left-hander Lael Lockhart Jr. got the start on the mound for the Cougars on Sunday and went five really strong innings only allowing two hits and striking out eight batters . . . Lockhart’s pitch count had reached eighty six when he exited the game, his stuff was good enough that he likely could have gone deeper into the game, but this early in the season there is no need to do more than he did, it’s a long season.
The Coogs started the scoring in their half of the second inning, and a more serious threat was thwarted when Brad Burckel, who drove in the first run of the game, was caught trying to steal third, and a matter of pitches later Kyle Lovelace was caught trying to steal second.
The game moved along quietly until the eighth when Northwestern State would tie the game at one by manufacturing a run . . . Seeking a possible third straight ninth inning victory in the teams final at-bat, Joe Davis led off the ninth with a strong single. With a pinch runner on first, Grayson Padgett laid down a perfect bunt to get the pinch runner to second and set the stage for more late inning heroics . . . Brad Burckel would come to the plate with two outs, after a wild pitch moved runners to second and third, but would strike out to send the game to extra innings.
Drama mounted in the tenth inning. The Cougars defense with two outs committed back to back infield errors allowing the Demons to hang just close enough as they eventually loaded the bases . . . With a full count, Demons batter J.P. Lagreco was seemingly hit by a pitch that would have walked in the go ahead run. However, Lagreco was called out for not getting out of the way of the pitch, officially ruled batter’s interference, he would subsequently mouth off to the umpire and get tossed out of the game, which then led Demons head coach Bobby Barbier to get in on the act and after a heated exchange with the umpire, Barbier would join Lagreco in the clubhouse for the rest of the game.
In the eleventh inning, the Cougars bullpen would give up a one out solo homerun that would prove to be the difference . . . Jared Triolo led off the bottom of the inning with a base hit. Grayson Padgett hit a sharp line drive single to right field, and when the right fielder bobbled the ball, Triolo was able to advance on to third base . . . The Cougars would strand runners at second and third to end the game.
The Cougars hit the road now to play McNeese in Lake Charles, Louisiana on Tuesday night before returning home for a three game set with Arizona next weekend.