A sunless day in Lafayette, Louisiana on Friday resulted in an outcome that the Houston Cougars and Louisiana Ragin’ Cajuns had hoped to avoid when they adjusted their schedule and moved Friday’s start time ahead three hours . . . But with one out in the eighth, the weather that had been feared showed up in force and the game was delayed in a 5-5 tie with lightning in the area to blame.
To say that Brandon Uhse wasted no time in getting his team on the scoreboard on Friday night is no understatement . . . Uhse launched the first pitch of the game from Ragin’ Cajuns starter Tommy Ray off a light pole beyond the wall in left-center field and the Cougars immediately led 1-0.
Louisiana waited until the second pitch of the bottom of the first to do the exact same thing to tie the game . . . After an infield single, a two-out two-run home run to center put the Ragin’ Cajuns in front 3-1.
Samuel Benjamin led off the top of the third inning with a double off the wall in left-center . . . One out later, Zach Arnold powered an opposite field home run over the right field wall to tie the game on his second home run of the year . . . A walk and a single put two one for Anthony Tulimero who singled into right field to give Houston a 4-3 lead . . . The single extended Tulimero’s reached base streak to all fourteen games this season . . . The Cougars would add a run on a wild pitch to take a two-run lead.
Two solo home runs, one in the fourth and one in the sixth, tied the game at five.
The lightning delay in the top of the eighth stopped the game after just over two hours of play and with Ian McMillan standing at first after a one out single.
When action resumed on Saturday afternoon, the final two innings took just over a half hour to complete . . . The Cougars had the bottom of the eighth unravel on them with a bevy of oddities including a wild pitch on an attempted bunt, a squeeze bunt, and a straight steal of home plate on the way to Louisiana taking a 9-5 lead which would hold up as the final score when Houston went down in order in the ninth.
The second game of the weekend series got underway less than one hour after the conclusion of Friday’s game . . . Houston got on the board first after a walk to Uhse and two balks moved him to third base . . . Tulimero put a ball in play in which the shortstop made an error and Uhse was safe at home . . . Tulimero’s reached base streak extended to all fifteen games on the season.
Trailing 2-1 in the fourth, Alex Lopez homered to right field to tie the game, his first home run in a Houston uniform . . . Louisiana took a 3-2 lead into the fifth inning . . . The Cougars collected four hits in the inning and took advantage of a bit-batter and a walk to add four runs and take a 6-3 lead midway through the game . . . Brandon Burckel collected his first collegiate base hit, an infield single, as part of the fifth inning rally.
Houston starter Nathan Medrano exited the game with two outs in the bottom of the sixth and gave the ball to Ben Sears as Houston led 7-4 . . . Sears inherited a runner at first but got out of the inning with no problem . . . The Cougars added a run in the top of the ninth on a Ryan Hernandez sacrifice fly to center field which scored Zach Arnold from third base.
Sears handled business in the ninth and despite a two-out double he retired the Ragin’ Cajuns and earned his third save of the season in the 8-4 victory . . . Medrano picked up the win and is 2-0 on the year . . . Uhse, Tulimero, and McMillan each had two base hits in the game, of the ten hits the Cougars had in total.
Houston (10-5) and Louisiana (7-7) will meet again on Sunday in the weekend finale, with first pitch scheduled for 1pm . . . As of now, Todd Whitting has not named a starting pitcher for the Sunday matchup.