Recap by: John Sullivan, Rice Athletics (firstname.lastname@example.org)
SUGAR LAND, Texas -- The Rice baseball team jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the first inning but Houston chipped-away for an eventual 6-5 win over the Owls in the final game of the season-long three game series between the crosstown rivals Tuesday evening at Constellation Field in Sugar Land, Texas.
Rice had already secured the series 2-1 with wins in both of the first two games to claim the Silver Glove Trophy. Early in game three it looked as though the Owls were a cinch to complete the series sweep of the No. 20 ranked Cougars.
Playing as the visiting team at the neutral site Rice went right to work in the top of the first inning. The Owls pounded out five hits, including three for extra bases, on the way to sending eight men to the plate in a five-run outburst. In 49 games this season the Blue & Gray has now scored a combined total of 48 runs in the game's first inning.
Houston answered with single runs in both of the first two innings. In the first, Grayson Padgett reached on a fielding error and advanced to third on a base hit by Joe Davis. Padgett scored on Jake Scheiner's single to make it 5-1.
Jared Triolo led off the second with a single and Connor Hollis' double to left put runners on second and third. The runs scored on consecutive ground outs to cut the margin to two, 5-3.
The Rice defense worked its way out of trouble for the next three innings as the Cougars threatened for runs in each frame. UH broke through to tie the game, 5-5, in the bottom of the sixth with a pair of runs on three hits. Houston took its first lead of the contest in the bottom of the eighth with an unearned run after two Owl fielding errors
A total of six Rice pitchers saw action in the game. Jackson Parthasarathy made his first start of the season. He was followed by Kendal Jefferies, Willy Amador, Addison Moss, Dane Myers and Evan Kravetz. Myers then returned to pitch once again as he never left the game. The staff could have been better-helped without five Owl fielding errors in the game. The Rice offense put together only three hits and one base on balls after the first inning.
Led by Charlie Warren as the series' Most Outstanding Player, a total of six Owls were named to the annual All-Silver Glove Team. Warren led all players with five hits, going 5-for-12 (.417) with a pair of doubles, three RBI and a stolen base. The remaining players on the 2017 All-Silver Glove Team included Dominic DiCaprio, Kendal Jefferies, Grayson Hurdsman, Corey Julks, Dane Myers, Ford Proctor, Jake Scheiner, Nick Slaughter, Jared Triolo, Connor Wong and Dayne Wunderlich.
The Owls next host C-USA foe Middle Tennessee at Reckling Park on May 12 to begin a four-game homestand that will close out the home portion of the regular season schedule. Friday's first pitch against the Blue Raiders is set for 6:30 pm.