Baseball Sports

Cougars move to second round of NCAA regional

The Cougars will face off against Lafayette today at 7 p.m. in the second round of the 2015 NCAA Houston Regional at Cougar Field after the No. 13 Houston Cougars defeated Houston Baptist, 6-4, in comeback fashion in the first round of the Regional.

Sophomore pitcher Andrew Lantrip struggled early, allowing three runs in the first inning and a home run in the second as Houston Baptist put the pressure on the Cougars early with a 4-0 lead.

“I think we knew our only shot going down the road of the regional was to stay with (Lantrip)” head coach Todd Whitting said. “He’s got a track record for being one of the best pitchers on our team so you just hope he’s going to find it. (We had to) trust that he was going to get it together, and get going and he did it.”

The Cougars managed to stay composed, not allowing the Huskies to put up any more runs after the second inning. Whitting trusted his team would work their way out of the early slump.

“From day one in fall practice we go one pitch at a time, and we just keep playing — that’s all you can do,” Whitting said, “If you got to give speeches this time of year it’s too late. It’s all a process and you got to start that stuff way back in the fall and continue through the season.”

The Cougars finally got on the board as junior center fielder Ashford Fulmer scored on junior second baseman Josh Vidales’ single to change the momentum of the game.

“I think once we scored the first run we settled in a little bit, the crowd got into it a little more,” Whitting said. “The dugout never panicked but once we got that first run we pushed across, and you could feel the whole dugout relaxed a little bit.”

The Cougars finished the inning strong with junior right fielder Kyle Survance scoring on junior designated hitter Jacob Campbell’s single, a home run from freshman left fielder Corey Julks that also brought in Vidales and Campbell, and freshman shortstop Connor Wong scored on junior catcher Ian Rice’s double.

The Cougars would finish the inning with a 6-4 lead that ultimately led to the final score as neither team scored after the third inning.

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