(Matt Creel went 2-for-4 at the plate as the DH and pitched two complete innings in the Cougars' win over Kentucky. Photo by Darla Tamulitis-La Vita Loca Photography, Copyright 2011, All Rights Reserved)
By Robert H Kelly
Copyright 2011 TexSport Publications
HOUSTON, TEXAS (March 5, 2011) The Houston Cougars (6-4, 0-0 C-USA) snapped its three-game losing streak by downing the Kentucky Wildcats (4-6, 0-0 SEC) 8-5 in the second game for both teams at the 2011 Houston College Classic.
The Cougars came back from a 2-1 deficit in the top of the seventh inning, scoring six runs to take a 6-1 lead.
The Wildcats scored a single run in the bottom of the inning and pulled within two in the bottom of the eighth, scoring two more runs.
Houston scored another run in the top of the ninth to insure the three-run victory.
UH drew blood first in the top of the first inning on a single by Caleb Ramsey which scored London Appling from second.
Kentucky came back with a two-run inning in the bottom of the fourth, scoring Chad Wright on a Luke Maile home run.
Maile took a 1-0 pitch from Houston pitcher Jordan Lewis, knocking it into deep left field for the two RBI round trip.
Houston then uncorked the bats in the top of the seventh, scoring six runs on seven hits; leaving two men on base after the hitting exhibition was over.
Jake Runte led off the inning with a single and advanced to second on a fielder’s choice.
M. P. Cokinos was called in to pinch hit for Travis Trial. He quickly singled up the middle scoring Runte from second. Joel Ansley was then substituted as a pinch runner for Cokinos.
John Cannon then tripled to right field, scoring Ansley, followed by Landon Appling reaching first on a fielder’s choice.
After Cannon was thrown out at home by Wildcat shortstop Taylor Black, Appling stole second base and advanced to third on a wild pitch.
Ryan Still also advanced to second on the wild pitch, after being walked.
Ramsey then singled through the right side, scoring both Appling and Still.
Matt Creel got in on the assault with a single, advancing Ramsey to second. Chase Jensen also hit a single advancing Creel to second and scoring Ramsey.
Runte got his second hit of the inning, connecting for an RBI single to scoring Creel to compete the scoring explosion.
Kentucky scored one run in the seventh and two more in the eighth to cut the Cougars lead to two, followed by a Houston insurance run in the ninth.
Creel, who came into the game in relieve of starter Jordan Lewis got the win, throwing two complete innings giving up two runs on four hits while striking out one.
Lewis went five complete innings, giving up two earned runs and three hits.
Dakota Dill was credited with the save.
For the Wildcats, Alex Meyer got the loss, giving up four earned runs on five hits while striking out six.
The Cougars will next face Texas A&M in a 6:00pm start on Sunday evening to close out the Houston College Classic.
Kentucky is slated for a 11:00am start against Utah on Sunday morning.