RIVERSIDE, Calif. — Tulane fell into a hole it was unable to climb out of as the Green Wave lost 6-2 in the rubber game of its series Sunday at UC Riverside.
Tulane (17-7) trailed 3-0 through five innings and didn’t score until the sixth, when sophomore Lex Kaplan blasted a two-run homer to right. UC Riverside (10-13) responded with a run in the bottom of the inning and added two more runs in the eighth to put the game out of reach.
“I just felt like we got beat in all phases of the game most of the weekend,” Tulane coach David Pierce said. “They outpitched us, outhit us and played better defense, and that’s why we didn’t win the rubber match.”
The Highlanders took a 1-0 lead in the first. Tulane right-hander Tim Yandel hit Joe Chavez, who came around to score on an RBI single by Mark Contreras.
Tulane had three hits in the first two innings but left two runners on base in each frame. In the fifth, Yandel (2-1) gave up a pair of two-out runs on another single by Contreras. Tulane posted its runs in the sixth: Kaplan homered, his third of the season, after sophomore Hunter Williams singled.
Yandel got into trouble in the seventh, putting two runners on with no outs, but reliever Alex Massey came on to extinguish the flames. After walking the first batter, Massey retired the next three Highlanders to end the inning.
UC Riverside put the game away in the eighth after Cody Sporrer’s leadoff triple. Sporrer scored on a groundout, and Chavez followed with a home run to left, giving UC Riverside its final run.
Yandel allowed nine hits in six innings while striking out one. UC Riverside’s Keaton Leach (2-2) hurled a complete game, striking out six and allowing seven hits.
SOUTHEASTERN 8, TEXAS A&M-CC 3: In Corpus Christi, Texas, after taking an early lead, Southeastern pulled away from host Texas A&M-Corpus Christi as the Lions (19-7, 7-2 Southland) completed a three-game sweep.
The win moved SLU into sole possession of first place in the Southland, a half-game ahead of McNeese and Northwestern State.
The Lions took a 3-0 lead in the first on Jacob Williams’ RBI single, Brett Hoffman’s bunt and an error. A&M-CC (10-10, 2-4) got two runs back in the second. After the Islanders loaded the bases, Brett Burner and Casey Thomas delivered RBI singles.
SLU added single runs in the fifth and sixth innings. Kevin Carr singled in Williams for the first run, and Williams added a sacrifice fly in the sixth. Chris Eades’ two-run single in the eighth helped put the game out of reach.
SLU’s Kyle Cedotal (3-1) had seven strikeouts and a walk in eight innings.
NICHOLLS STATE 4, SAM HOUSTON STATE 3: In Huntsville, Texas, Nicholls (12-10-1, 4-5 Southland) rode a four-run first inning to victory.
In the Nicholls State first, two singles and a walk loaded the bases before Gavin Wehby scored on a fielder’s choice. Seth Stevens then cleared the bases with a three-run home run.
Sam Houston (12-13, 6-3) pushed across three runs in the third on three singles a double.
Sam Houston threatened to score in the eighth and ninth innings, but Nicholls turned inning-ending double plays in each inning.
Nicholls’ Justin Sinibaldi (4-1) allowed seven hits and all three runs in five innings. Bearkat pitcher Hayden Nixon threw 8.1 scoreless innings in relief of starter Ryan Brinley (1-3).