Cougar baseball splits games at Al Ogletree Classic in Texas

From staff reports

Five multi-hit performances weren’t enough for the Cougars (3-5) who lost 9-5 to Houston Baptist University on Sunday to split the Al Ogletree Classic.

The Huskies (5-3) scored eight of their nine runs against WSU relief pitchers, all of which were earned. Freshman right-handed starter Ryan Ward turned the ball over to junior left-hander Trenton Dupre with a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the fourth.

Junior catcher Jacob Martinez doubled down the right field line with one out in the fourth. Martinez scored on the next at-bat off a triple to left by junior center fielder Joe Van Marter to tie the game a 2-2.

HBU took the lead when senior infielder grounded out to short stop Jack Strunc, scoring Van Marter to take a 3-2 lead. But Dupre was able to hold the Huskies to only two runs in the inning, getting senior infielder Andrew Alvarez to flight out to right after allowing back to back walks.

The Cougars came right back in the top of the fifth with a three-run outburst. Senior short stop Patrick McGrath and junior right fielder Cameron Frost opened with back-to-back hits to give WSU two runners in scoring position.

A second throwing error in the inning by senior short stop Louie Payetta allowed junior first baseman Wes Leow to reach first while scoring McGrath and Frost.

After Strunc grounded out to third to advance Leow, freshman catcher Ty Johnson singled to right, scoring Leow to give WSU a 5-3 lead.

Dupre came out to pitch the bottom of the fifth for WSU before Head Coach Marty Lees pulled him after walking senior outfielder Austin Saenz. Sophomore right-hander Colby Nealy (0-1) took over in relief and gave up a two-run home-run to junior left fielder Christian Thames, tying the game at 5-5.

The Huskies continued to capitalize on the Cougars’ mistakes when junior third baseman Justin Monsour scored off a wild pitch after doubling to left center the previous at-bat.

HBU never surrendered their lead again, tacking on one more run in the fifth and two more in the eighth inning.

Nealy took the loss for WSU while senior right-hander Matt Harding (1-0) picked up the win for the Huskies. The Cougars return to the diamond on Thursday for their first home game of the 2016 season against Utah Valley.

Reporting by Lars Hanson