April 2, 2011
NEW ORLEANS - Jeremy Schaffer posted his third, three-hit game of the season, but the Tulane baseball team could muster only two runs in their 5-2 loss against Houston on Saturday afternoon on the turf inside Greer Field at Turchin Stadium. Andrew Garner made a solid relief appearance, closing out the game with three scoreless innings, but the Cougars scored five runs over the first six innings to claim the win.
"We didn't swing the bat well through the lineup," said Tulane head coach Rick Jones. "We had some hits, but we weren't bunching them and putting (hits) together. I don't know how many ground ball outs we made in the infield, but we had some very weak at-bats, again... Andrew (Garner) did a good job out of the bullpen for us keeping the score where it was, but offensively we've been struggling for four games now, and we've scored three runs."
Houston manufactured a run in the opening inning when Landon Appling singled to start the inning, stole second base and moved to third on a sacrifice bunt. Chase Jensen then grounded out to the shortstop to collect the RBI and push the Cougars ahead, 1-0.
In the fourth, John Cannon singled and moved to third on a base hit from Jake Runte, before Austin Gracey dropped down a sacrifice bunt and Robby Broach's throw home was not in time to get the runner and the Cougars lead moved to 2-0.
Broach allowed two more runs in the fifth inning to complete his outing and Gunner Wright entered the game in the sixth. In five complete innings, Broach struck out two and walked one in his fifth start of the season. He surrendered four runs - three earned - on seven hits to fall to 1-2 on the season.
Wright tossed just two-thirds of an inning and allowed one run on two hits, while hitting two batters. Andrew Garner entered in the sixth to retire the final batter of the inning and then held the Cougars scoreless the rest of the way. Garner struck out two batters and allowed only one hit in three and one-thirds innings of relief work to keep the game close.
The Green Wave loaded the bases in the eighth against Houston starter Jordan Lewis, as the left-hander threw seven and one-third innings with two runs allowed on nine hits. With the bases full of Tulane runner and one out, Dakota Dill came on in relief and Garrett Cannizaro drove in a run on a fielder's choice groundout. With two on and two outs, Dill got another groundout to get out of the jam with Houston still leading 5-2.
Tulane put the lead off runner on base again in the ninth inning, but Dill got a ground out, a fly ball out and struck out the final batter of the game to make it a 5-2 final in favor of the visitors.
"We may have lost the series, against Houston, but this is conference and at the end of the season, you're going to have a conference record," said Schaffer. "It doesn't put in parentheses who you won and who you lost a series to...so we need to find a way to come out and get a conference win tomorrow."
Schaffer tied with Houston's Appling for the game-high with three hits, while Boullosa extended his hitting streak to three games with a pair of hits on Saturday. Cannizaro and Crohan each drove in RBI's, while Boullosa and Woodson scored the two Green Wave runs on the afternoon.
The Green Wave and Cougars conclude their three-game set on Sunday afternoon with first pitch scheduled for 1:00.