April 3, 2012
Trailing 2-1 to start the bottom of the ninth inning, Rice came up with back-to-back base hits with one away. The Owls were aggressive, trying to hustle to get from first third on Keenan Cook's clutch pinch-hit to right field, but Sam Houston made the long throw to the hot corner get the second out of the inning. J.T. Chargois drew walk to put the potential tying run at second and winning run at first base. The Bearkats got out of the jam with a game-ending strikeout to post their ninth-straight win.
After completing a dramatic comeback two days ago for an 8-6 Conference USA victory over Southern Miss, Rice looked to have some more of the same come-back magic. Rice head coach Wayne Graham explained that where the Owls have been creating offensive chances to score runs (like the team did on both Sunday and again Tuesday night), the Blue & Gray has not always finished on all of those same opportunities.
"That's been the story of our offense this year," Graham said. "We're not getting the big hits when we need them. If you don't get the big hits when you need them you're going to be in trouble."
Rice pitchers held Sam Houston to just four hits on the night, but Sam Houston strung together three of the four on consecutive batters in the top of the second inning. Kevin Miller and Jake Arrington collected back-to-back singles to put runners on first and second. John Hale followed with a RBI double to left-center. Arrington came home on an RBI ground out that gave the Bearkats a 2-0 advantage.
The Owls worked to get runners in scoring position in the bottom of the third and fifth innings, but the men were left on base. Rice struck for a run in the bottom of the eighth on a solo homer by junior outfielder Jeremy Rathjen. The blast was Rathjen's team-leading sixth round-tripper of the season, and the 21st of his collegiate career. He cut the lead to one and set the stage for a dramatic bottom of the ninth.
Four Rice pitchers saw action on the night and delivered positive performances. Austin Kubitza completed 3.0 scheduled innings of work where he allowed three hits and struck out two. John Simms allowed just one hit, but matched it with a strikeout in 2.0 scoreless innings. Jordan Stephens fired 3.0 hitless frames that featured four strikeouts. Tyler Duffey pitched a 1-2-3 ninth to complete seven-straight scoreless innings. Solid pitching also caught coach Graham's attention.
"Kubitza threw well," Graham said. "They got to one pitch where they scored, but I thought he pitched well. We pitched a good game."
Rice is now 21-10 overall. Sam Houston State improved to 20-9.
The Owls next return to action on Thursday (April 5) with the start of a three-game C-USA league series at Tulane. Rice and the Green Wave play at 6:30 pm in New Orleans, La., on Thurs.-Fri, followed by a 1 pm Saturday game in the series finale.
Baseball Falls Saturday In Texas Twinbill
02/19/2017 - The Rice baseball team struck for the lead in both games of Saturday’s double-header at Texas’ UFCU Disch-Falk Field in Austin, but the...
Baseball Wins Season-Opener Friday Night at Texas
02/18/2017 - Junior Dane Myers pitched six quality innings on the mound, had two hits at the plate and scored what proved to be the game-winning run in the top ...
Baseball Opens 2017 Season Friday Night
02/16/2017 - The Rice baseball team, ranked as high as No. 21 in the nation heading into the 2017 campaign, plays its season-opener on Friday (Feb. 17) on the...
Baseball Fanfest Set For Sunday
02/08/2017 - The second-annual Rice Baseball Fanfest, where the public can get up close to the Owls' baseball program, is set for this Sunday (Feb. 12) from 12:...
Batter Up! Owls Hold First Practice For 2017...
01/27/2017 - The Rice baseball team, the Conference USA Preseason favorite according to the league’s head coaches and ranked as high as No. 21 in the...
Baseball Tabbed as Preseason Favorite In C-USA ...
01/25/2017 - With the top two individual preseason all-conference honors, including Glenn Otto as the 2017 Preseason Pitcher of the Year and Ford Proctor as the...
Rice Selects Daktronics for Reckling Park Upgrade
01/11/2017 - Rice University and Daktronics are partnering to bring a greatly enhanced video presentation to one of college baseball’s iconic venues with ...
Otto Named Preseason All-America
12/19/2016 - Junior pitcher Glenn Otto has been named a preseason All-America selection by Collegiate Baseball, the publication announced on Monday (Dec. 19).
- Top Videos /
- Online Store