HOUSTON -- It took just three runs to take down the No. 10 Rice Owls behind Ryan Brinley's seven-inning gem. Sam Houston won 3-1, for their fourth straight win over Rice and the sixth in the last eight games between the two schools.
Brinley was outstanding on the mound for seven innings. The sophomore transfer allowed just two hits while striking out two Rice Owl batters. The win is the first of his Sam Houston State career.
“This is just a great ballgame for us. We got a great pitching performance from Ryan and for the most part played good defense. We got some timely hits and we capitalized on some mistakes. It was a great team win for us tonight.”
The Kats got the scoring started in the top of the third inning. Middle-infield duo Jake MacWilliam and Ryan Farney each singled to start the inning before center fielder Colt Atwood reached on a fielder’s choice, eliminating MacWilliam.
The hot-hitting first baseman Ryan O’Hearn ripped a single into right field to drive in Farney from second base for the first run of the game. With the hit, O’Hearn extended his hitting streak to 11 games.
Catcher Anthony Azar drove in a second run when he singled into left field to score Atwood from third.
Rice didn’t have their first base runner until the bottom of the third inning when designated hitter Connor Teykl worked a two-out walk.
The Owls got on the board in the fourth inning when left fielder Michael Aquino doubled down the left field line to score right fielder Keenan Cook from second base.
SHSU added an insurance run in the top of the eighth after left fielder Luke Plucheck singled with two outs. MacWilliam dropped down a bunt for a single and the third baseman threw the ball away and Plucheck came around to score from first.
Alan Scott and Jason Simms shut down the Owls for the final two innings. Lefty Alan Scott pitched a hitless eighth inning. Righty Jason Simms kept the owls off the board in the ninth to register his third save of the season.
The Kats turn their attention to the Houston College Classic this upcoming weekend.
“We’re ready to go into Minute Maid this weekend. We’re going to face some tough teams but we have a lot of experience going into it. The excitement for our team will be great.”