By Cheval John
Even though, No. 20 Sam Houston State took the series from Cal State-Northridge on Saturday, the Bearkats was focused on getting the sweep.
It wouldn’t be easy as both teams fought hard until a walk-off sacrifice fly by Ryan Farney gave the Bearkats a 3-2 victory in 13 innings at Don Sanders Stadium in Huntsville, Texas.
“It was pretty for our offense or defense but our pitching was outstanding all week and at the end of the day we got the sweep this weekend so we’re happy,” Farney said to SHSU’s athletics website, gobearkats.com. “You’ve got to love being in situations like that with the game on the line and a chance to win the game for your team.”
Ryan Brinley pitched 1 1/3 innings in relief and secured his second win of the season.
Sam Houston (13-3) jumped in front 2-0 in the bottom of the second when first baseman Ryan O’Hearn launched a two run, home run over right centerfield.
It seemed as if the Bearkats was going to cruise to the sweep because of the strong pitching of starter Dirk Masters, who went 6 1/3 innings with the no decision.
But that was not going to be the case as the Bearkats committed five errors with two of them leading to Cal State-Northridge (6-10) knotting the game at 2.
The first one came in the top of the third when Ranny Lowe reached first on a error by third baseman Carter Burgess that allowed catcher Dylan Alexander, who led off the inning with a single, to advance to second.
Another error by short stop Jake MacWilliam loaded the bases and Alexis Mercado issued the walk that scored Alexander from third to cut the lead to 2-1.
It got worse for the Bearkats in the top of the seventh inning when Lowe hit a one out single and advanced to third on an error by MacWilliam when he was trying to attempt the double play and threw it away that allowed second baseman Michael Livingston to reach base and advance to second.
The next batter, Pak hit a single to right field that scored Lowe from third to tie the game.
From there both teams battled that went into extras courtesy of strong pitching from both bullpens.
Then Sam Houston was able to get something going in the bottom of the 13th inning when MacWilliam led off with a single and advanced to third on a throwing error by reliever Shay Maltese when he was trying to throw out left fielder Luke Plucheck at first on a sacrifice bunt play that allowed him to advanced to second.
Though it was the Matador’s only error of the game, it turned out to be very costly as it allowed Farney to drive in MacWilliam from third for the walk-off win on the sacrifice fly.
Sam Houston prepares for a mid-week matchup on Tuesday as they host University of Texas-San Antonio on Tuesday night at 6:30 p.m.
By Cheval John
What comes to your mind when you hear the word, challenge?
Does it produce the mentality of fear of failure or does it energizes you to say, ”This is nothing.”
Challenges are there to see what we are made off.
For example, the Sam Houston State baseball team participated in the Houston College Classic this past weekend against three nationally-ranked teams in Texas Christian (TCU), Texas Tech and Texas at Minute Maid Park.
As a result. they defeated Texas Christian 9-4 on Friday, Texas Tech 10-6 on Saturday and lost narrowly to Texas 3-2 on Sunday.
What would have happened if they had said when they got the invitation to participate that “Oh, I don’t think we can compete with these teams because of their prominence in college baseball and that we have achieved consecutive at-large bids to the NCAA Division I Baseball Tournament?”
Well, Sam Houston would not have achieved national rankings in four collegiate baseball polls; No.20 in Baseball America
Left fielder Luke Plucheck would not have had the opportunity to make acrobatic catches against TCU
and then against Texas Tech that made it on SportsCenter Top 10 plays.*
And Sam Houston would not have had the opportunity to take their baseball program to another stratosphere.
So the question is: “How long will you allow fear to hinder you from achieving your dreams?”
As Jen Groover put it when she launched her successful product, “The Butler Bag” in her book, “What If And Why Not?:
“Regret is Much Worse Than Failure.”
So do not let the fear of failure prevent you from achieving your dreams.
*Videos courtesy of the Southland Conference via CSN Houston
By Cheval John
HOUSTON-Sam Houston State wanted to show the nation that they are a force to be reckoned with.
So far so good.
The Bearkats defeated No.26 Texas Tech 10-6 at the Houston College Classic at Minute Maid Park.
The victory is Sam Houston’s third consecutive over a nationally ranked opponent.
Last Tuesday, the Bearkats defeated No. 10 Rice 3-1 at Reckling Park, then No.12 Texas Christian (TCU) 9-4 in the first game of the tournament.
Sam Houston (10-1 overall) had three home runs in the game that produced seven of their ten runs.
Ryan O’Hearn, who went 2 for 4, had two home runs with four RBIs.
“I struggled a little bit yesterday and was chasing pitches out of the zone. Today I was just worried about getting strikes and getting good pitches to hit,” O’Hearn said to SHSU’s athletics website gobearkats.com. “I got a few of them. It was a lot of fun, especially here at this stadium and to help my team win. It’s huge for us to get wins against these teams in this tournament.”
Hayden Simerly had the other home run with a 3 for 5 performance and two RBIs.
The Bearkats fed off the offense with their pitching.
Reliever Sam Odom pitched 4 1/3 innings, fanned three batters and got his second win.
“This is just a crazy experience,” Odom said to gobearkats.com. “I never expected to come into my first year in college and be able to throw as many innings as I have. Playing at Minute Maid going against what I grew up watching, it’s just an amazing feeling and I can’t explain it.”
O’Hearn started the fun in the top of the first when he launched the first pitch into the Crawford Box for a 1-0 lead.
Texas Tech (8-3) responded with two runs in the bottom of the first to make it 2-1.
Jake Barrios started it with a two out, infield single and advanced to second on a walk to Eric Guitierrez.
Then Adam Kirsh ripped a single past third baseman Carter Burgess that scored Barrios from second.
Guitierrez scored after the ball skipped away from Burgess while trying to apply the tag.
The Bearkats wasn’t phased by it as they exploded for five runs in the top of the second for a 6-2 lead.
Shea Pierce and Luke Plucheck issued back-to-back walks and the bases was loaded after an infield single by Ryan Farney.
Colt Atwood’s RBI single drove in Pierce to knot it up at 2.
Then, O’Hearn’s sacrifice fly gave the Bearkats a 3-2 lead.
A wild pitch by Red Raiders’ starting pitcher Matt Winthrow allowed Farney to score the fourth run for Sam Houston.
A batter later, with two outs, Simerly launched a two-run shot to right field to increase the lead to 6-2.
Even though Texas Tech was chipping away at the lead by scoring a run in the bottom of the second and the fifth to pull within 6-4, they would not get any closer.
O’Hearn made sure of that when he hit a two-run home run to right field in the top of the sixth inning to make it 8-4.
Sam Houston added two more runs in the top of the seventh to increase the lead to 10-4 and would hold the Red Raiders for the win.
Withrow wound up with the loss for Texas Tech and now holds a record at 1-1.
The Bearkats look to finish the tournament unblemished later this morning when they face No.15 Texas at 10:05 a.m.
By Cheval John
Sam Houston State took the series from Dallas Baptist with a 4-2 win in the rubber match at Don Sanders Stadium in Huntsville, Texas.
The Bearkats got some solid pitching and timely hitting when it mattered the most.
Freshman Seth Holbert pitched two shut out innings in relief and got his first win of the season.
Closer Jason Simms got his second save of the season.
Simms made it interesting in the final two innings.
With the Bearkats (7-1) leading 4-1going in the top of the eighth, Dallas Baptist was trying to make something happen.
Trevin Sonnier led off the inning with a single.
Though Simms got the next two outs, the bases was loaded after he walked Austin Listi, who went 1 for 3 and Daniel Salters, who was 1 for 2, followed with a single.
But Simms got in the zone and struck out R.J. Alexander to end the threat.
It got even more interesting in the top of the ninth.
After getting the first two outs, David Martinelli issued a walk and stole second while Sonnier reached on a error to bring the tying run to the plate.
The bases was loaded after pinch hitter Drew Turbin was hit by a pitch.
However, Simms got Wesolowski to ground into a fielder choice play to end the game.
With a scoreless tie, Dallas Baptist (5-2) got on the board in the top of the fifth for a 1-0 lead on a squeeze play that allowed Justin Wall to score from third.
Wall led off the inning with a single and advanced to second on a ground out by Martinelli, and advanced to third on a wild pitch by Dirk Masters, who went five innings and got the no-decision.
Sam Houston quickly tied it up at 1 in the bottom of the fifth on a sacrifice fly by Colt Atwood.
Toups, who was 2 for 2, led off the inning with a double that went over the head of center fielder Salters.
The bases was loaded courtesy of back-to-back walks to Luke Plucheck and Ryan Farney with one out.
The Bearkats took the lead at 2-1 in the bottom of the sixth inning thanks to a two out, bases loaded walk issued by Plucheck.
Sam Houston was looking for some cushion in the bottom of the seventh inning and got it when Carter Burgess hit a two run single to extend the lead to 4-1.
After Atwood reached on an error and O’Hearn singled, Azar’s sacrifice bunt move both runners to second and third, respectively.
Dallas Baptist elected to walk Simerly intentionally to load the bases and try to get a double play ball from Burgess.
The Bearkats are aiming to carry the momentum this week when they travel to Houston to face Rice at Reckling Park and then participate in the Houston College Classic this weekend at Minute Maid Park, home of the Houston Astros.
By Cheval John
Courtesy of the Longhorn Network
Sam Houston State has a chance to take the series today at 1 p.m. after defeating Dallas Baptist 12-2 last night at Don Sanders Stadium in Huntsville, Texas.
The Bearkats (5-1) was clicking on offense with timely hits.
Luke Plucheck, went 3 for 3 with an RBI and two runs scored.
Hayden Simerly also was 3 for 3 with an RBI and a run scored.
Ryan Farney, was 1 for 1 with three RBIs, a run scored and a walk.
Sam Houston got quality pitching from starter Andrew Godail.
Godail got his second win of the season after going five innings and giving up a run on three hits and three strike outs.
Sam Odom pitched four innings in relief and recorded his first save of the season.
Dallas Baptist are now 5-1 after suffering their first loss of the season.
The Patriots couldn’t replicate their offense from the day before as they left 10 men on base
It seemed as if it was going to be deja vu for the Bearkats again when they had a Sam Houston an opportunity to break the scoreless tie in the second inning.
Ryan O’Hearn issued a walk with one out in the bottom of the first.
With two outs, Simerly issued with a walk to make it first and second.
Carter Burgess followed with a walk to load the bases.
However, they couldn’t capitalize as Drew Smith got Corey Toups to fly out to end the inning.
Dallas Baptist took advantage of their opportunity in the top of the second when Camden Duzenack hit a bloop RBI single that landed just inside the fair line to make it 1-0.
Trevin Sonnier hit a two out infield single, advanced to second on a pass ball and scored from second on Duzenack’s single.
Finally, Sam Houston were able to capitalized with four runs in the bottom of the third inning for a 4-1.
Plucheck started the party with a one out double to left field. Farney followed with a walk.
Then, O’Hearn issued a walk to load the bases.
A wild pitch allowed Farney to score the second run.
Anthony Azar’s sacrifice fly drove in the third run.
Then, Simerly’s RBI single drove in the fourth run.
Dallas Baptist pulled within a 4-2 lead courtesy of Austin Listi’s solo moon shot to left field.
Sam Houston exploded for three runs in the bottom of the third for a 7-2 lead.
A sacrifice bunt by Farney allowed Toups, who led off with a single and advanced to third on Plucheck’s single, scored the fifth run.
It seemed as if the Patriots would have gotten out of the third inning after Colt Atwood hit a routine ground ball to second.
However, Duzenack bobbled the ball and Atwood reached first to keep the inning alive.
That allowed O’Hearn to hit a two-run, double to extend it to 7-2.
Sam Houston added two more runs in the bottom of the fourth to make it 9-2 on RBI singles by Toups and Plucheck.
The Bearkats increased their lead to 11-2 in the bottom of the sixth inning on a two-run single by Farney.
Sam Houston added one more for good measure in the bottom of the seventh inning to make it 12-2.