Deke: Cougars stun Tigers to advance to Super Regionals
Coach Paul Mainieri could not have scripted a better start to the first few moments of the game for his LSU Tigers. But then in the blink of an eye, what could have been the start to a great night turned into a nightmare.
It looked as if the Tigers were going to run away with the final game of the Baton Rouge Regional, but a quick 2-0 lead quickly evaporated, and the Houston Cougars came up with a huge third inning that led to a 12-2 blowout for UH. Houston now advances to the Super Regional and will play host to in-state foe Texas next week at Cougar Field in Houston.
LSU batted first in the game and the Tigers scored two runs. The home crowd was in the game and freshman pitcher Alden Cartwright had a lead as he went to the mound for the Tigers. LSU jumped on the Cougars by scoring two runs in the top half of the first inning.
But then LSU pitching coach Alan Dunn took Cartwright out of the game in the first, as the Cougars tied the game at 2-2 when they came to bat in the first inning. Then both teams would then go scoreless in the next inning before the Cougars erupted for a massive seven-run third inning to blow the game wide open building a 9-2 lead. The Cougars stunned the Tigers and took the crowd out of the game.
After scoring two runs in the first, the Tigers were unable to score any runs as the Cougars protected their 9-2 lead. Houston kept LSU off the scoreboard as pitcher Jared Robinson retired 10 of the next 12 Tigers batters he faced.
Baseball is a game of confidence, and Houston had plenty of it. The Cougars grew stronger as the game wore on. Houston coasted into the eighth inning with the Tigers down to their final six outs of the season.
LSU would get runners on second and third base but the Cougars got Tyler Moore to ground out to first and the Tigers were unable to score leaving Houston in the lead 9-2 with the Cougars going to bat in the bottom half of the eighth.
The Cougars would add three insurance runs to push their lead to 12-2 going to the top of the ninth inning. LSU was unable to score at their final at bat of the season and the Cougars easily won the game. The Tigers season comes to an end with a 46-16-1 overall record. After riding a ten game win streak and considered the team to beat by many, the Tigers end their season losing their final two games.