Recap by: John Sullivan, Rice Athletics (firstname.lastname@example.org)
HOUSTON – The No. 16 ranked Southern Miss baseball team scored in eight of the game’s nine innings on the way to a 17-6 Conference USA win over the Rice baseball team Sunday afternoon at Reckling Park.
Early in the game Rice was in high-gear offensively. After Southern Miss quickly posted a run in the top of the first inning the Owls came right back with four in the bottom of the frame. Brad Gneiting drew a leadoff walk and hustled to third on Charlie Warren’s single to right field. Gneiting scored on Dane Myers’ game-tying single, but the Blue & Gray wasn’t finished. Dominic DiCaprio walked to load the stations and Ford Proctor followed with a single to left to score two. A two-out Darryn Sheppard single scored DiCaprio to put Rice ahead 4-1.
The Golden Eagles continued to fight, and came back for an unearned run in the second. In the top of the third, a one-out hit double, walk and hit batter loaded the bases. Matthew Guidry hit a grand slam to put USM back in front, 6-4. The Golden Eagles then proceeded to add three in the fourth, one run in the fifth, seventh and eighth, and five runs in the top of the ninth.
Rice finished with six runs in a 12-hit attack. The Owls reached double-digit hits for the 20th time this season, including every game against nationally-ranked USM. The sophomore tandem of DiCaprio and Proctor both had three hits in the contest.
The Owls are now 13-25 overall and 4-11 in C-USA league play. Southern Miss is 28-9 on the season and in sole possession of first place in the C-USA standings with a 12-3 conference ledger.
Rice has wrapped-up its current seven-game homestand and does not have a game scheduled until Friday. The Owls are next on the road for a three-game C-USA weekend series at Western Kentucky on April 21-23.