Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Conference USA roundup - Tuesday, April 17

HOUSTON -- Junior starting pitcher Chris Kelley scattered four hits and struck out a career-high seven batters and reliever Cole St.Clair closed it out with three hitless innings to lead the sixth-ranked Rice baseball team to a 7-4 victory over the visiting fifth-ranked Texas Longhorns Tuesday evening at Reckling Park in Houston. Longhorn outfielder Kyle Russell hit his 21st home run of the season to set a new single-season record at Texas in the sixth inning.

The Owls jumped on the scoreboard for a run in the bottom of the first inning and chipped away for scores in five of their eight offensive frames. Junior Tyler Henley led off the first by blasting a triple to the wall in center field and he scored on a sacrifice fly by junior Chad Lembeck.

Rice won its third game in a row to improve to 31-10 on the season. Texas fell to 31-11 on the year.

The current five-game homestand continues for Rice with a C-USA weekend series against Central Florida starting on Friday. Texas will continue its road trip, heading to Nebraska for a Big 12 series, also starting on Friday.

Texas recap
Rice recap

No. 24 Tulane 4, Northwestern State 3

METAIRIE, La. - Senior right-hander Matt Goebel gave the Green Wave a solid 6.0 innings of work and the defense made several highlight-reel plays behind him as the Tulane University baseball team defeated Northwestern State, 4-3, Tuesday afternoon at Zephyr Field.

Tulane's defense was flawless on the day, and made big plays with the leather late in the ballgame to thwart some Demon rallies. Northwestern State erased a 3-0 deficit with a three-run third, but Goebel came back to keep the Demons off the board the rest of his outing, and senior closer Daniel Latham went the final two frames to pick up his 10th save of the season.

With the win, Tulane improves to 28-11 on the year and 8-3 against teams from the state of Louisiana. Northwestern State, meanwhile, falls to 16-22 overall.

Northwestern State recap
Tulane recap

No. 16 Texas A&M 8, Houston 3

COLLEGE STATION, Texas - Texas A&M jumped out to a 6-2 lead after three innings and never looked back in taking an 8-3 win over the University of Houston baseball team Tuesday in a non-conference game at Olsen Field.

The Cougars scored single runs in the second and third innings, but the Aggies had an answer in the next half inning. The Aggies scored a pair of runs in the first inning, one in the second and broke the game open with three more in the third inning before a rain and lightning delay halted the game for more than an hour.

With the win, the Cougars fell to 19-17 overall, while Texas A&M improved to 31-8. Houston returns to action this weekend, traveling to New Orleans for a C-USA series against No. 24 Tulane. The Friday game will be televised by CSTV. Texas A&M will host No. 15 Oklahoma State in a Big 12 series. The Saturday game will be televised by Cox Sports Television.

Houston recap
Texas A&M recap

Memphis 4, Austin Peay 3
Senior Michael Murray shot a single through the right side to score Kyle Norrid for the go-ahead run and Matt Yokley (4-2) sat Austin Peay down in order in the ninth to seal a 4-3 win for Memphis, Tuesday night at Nat Buring Stadium. Memphis snaps a five-game losing streak to the Governors and improves to 23-14 with its fourth straight win.

The two squads will square off again Wednesday in Clarksville, Tenn. First pitch is slated for 6:30 p.m.

Austin Peay recap
Memphis recap

South Florida 10, Central Florida 5

Tampa, Fla. - A three-run first inning was not enough to enable the UCF baseball team to knock off USF Tuesday in a 10-5 loss in Tampa. Both teams combined for 15 walks as the loss dropped the Knights to 18-20 on the season.

Tyson Auer wasted little time in stretching his hitting streak to 13 games by picking up a single in the first inning. Meanwhile, Eric Kallstrom finished his evening by tying a career-high with three hits and drove in two. The loss for the Knights was the second this season against the Bulls (April 3, 11-4 in Tampa).

USF (27-12) starter James Rowe faced just four batters before hitting the dugout in the top of the first. Matt Horwath and Shane Brown both were issued walks to get the game started and Auer followed with a single to center to load them up. Rowe then walked Kiko Vazquez to give the Knights a 1-0 lead, and left in favor of Yuri Higgins even though Rowe had gotten to two strikes on all four hitters he went up against. Higgins did pick up the first out, but gave up a two-run single to Kallstrom as the shortstop banged a 2-2 pitch through the left side.

The Knights will travel to No. 6 Rice in a C-USA series this weekend. The Bulls will host Rutgers in a Big East series.

UCF recap
USF recap

Eastern Kentucky 14, Marshall 3
RICHMOND, Ky. - Eastern Kentucky jumped out to a 7-1 lead after two innings and never looked back en route to a 14-3 win over the Marshall University baseball team on Tuesday at Turkey Hughes Field.

The Colonels (15-16-1) recorded 19 hits in the game, a Marshall opponent-high this season, sending the Thundering Herd (14-20) to its 15th straight loss while snapping its own four-game skid. The win also stopped a three-game Herd win streak in the all-time series with EKU.

Marshall will travel to Memphis for a C-USA series this weekend. Eastern Kentucky will host Xavier on Wednesday.

Marshall recap
EKU recap

Jacksonville State 14, UAB 5
JACKSONVILLE, Ala. - UAB gave up at least one run in the final six Jacksonville State innings to give the Gamecocks a 14-5 victory over the Blazers at Rudy Abbott Field Tuesday night. Blazer catcher Danny Sawyer had two runs scored on a 1-for-3 night at the plate.

Jacksonville State improves to 21-16 with the triumph, while UAB is now 16-22 having lost its sixth straight. The teams complete the two-game series on Wednesday.

UAB recap
Jacksonville State recap

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