March 26, 1999
NEW ORLEANS, La. -Brandon Belanger and Nick Herz hit back-to-back home runs in the eighth inning to propel Tulane (19-7, 2-2 C-USA) to a 4-2 victory over Conference USA rival Cincinnati on Friday.
With Cincinnati (8-9, 1-3 C-USA) holding a one-run lead, Jake Burnham started the bottom of the eighth with a walk and advanced to second on a Mickey McKee single. After a Jake Gautreau fly-out, Belanger hit his second home run of the year, a three-run blast over the left field wall. Not to be out done, Herz answered with a solo shot of his own, also over the left field wall, to give Tulane a 4-1 advantage.
The Bearcats threatened in the top of the ninth, pushing a run across to pull within two, before Belanger took the mound in relief of starter Jared Berkowitz. Belanger earned his sixth save of the year while Berkowitz claimed the win to improve to 6-2 on the year. The junior scattered eight hits over eight innings, giving up two runs while picking up two strikeouts. Right-hander Joey List took the loss for Cincinnati, falling to 1-2 on the year after giving up four runs on nine hits with five strikeouts.
Cincinnati jumped out to an early lead scoring in the top of the first. With the bases loaded, right fielder Corey Hinton singled up the middle to score Kevin Youkilis and leave the bases full. However, the Bearcats could not capitalize again, as Anthony Snowell grounded out to Tulane first baseman McKee to end the inning. From there, defense dominated as neither team committed an error and the two squads combined to leave 20 men on base.
Belanger finished the game 3-for-4 at the plate with a game-high three RBI, while Herz was 2-of-2 at the plate.
The two teams meet again Saturday at Turchin Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 2 p.m.