Malibu, Calif. — Trailing Pepperdine 5-0 heading into the eighth inning, Tulane put together a furious rally in the last two innings to defeat Pepperdine and clinching the weekend series,
Despite a respectable start by Tulane’s Alex Massey, Pepperdine (0-2) managed to take a lead early in the contest that ballooned to 5-0 after the seventh inning, but Tulane (2-0) came back strong, scoring four runs in the top of the eighth before adding five in the top of the ninth for the win.
“We look to play the game to its entirety,” Tulane baseball coach David Pierce said. “We look to do that every day, and our kids exemplified that today. They did a great job of just hanging in there. We had a couple of mistakes and walks, so there were some things we had to overcome and that is what I was impressed with. We just kept on playing. Our kids did a great job fighting back.”
Pepperdine closer Chandler Blanchard entered the top of the eighth with the bases-loaded and two outs, but Tulane’s Stephen Alemais’ infield single scored Grant Brown, Garrett Deschamp walked with the bases loaded, and Richard Carthon’s two-RBI single made it a one-run game.
Redshirt sophomore Dan Rankin pitched in the seventh and eighth innings, and despite giving up a home run, the lanky righty was effective in shutting Pepperdine down in the eighth.
Blanchard’s defense did not help him in the top of the ninth, as Tulane scored five runs on five hits and two errors. Senior pinch hitter Tyler Wilson singled in the go-ahead run before Hunter Williams and Deschamp added RBIs, while Alemais scored on a fielding error.
Rankin (1-0) picked up the win after going two innings.
Deschamp, Carthon, Brown and Alemais all notched two hits apiece.
The two teams will wrap up the series Sunday, with Tim Yandel making his first-career start for Tulane. Yandel (1-1, 0.50) threw 18.0 innings in 2014, while holding hitters to a .185 batting average. Southpaw Ryan Wilson, a true freshman, will start for Pepperdine.
Tulane will face Southeastern Louisiana in Hammond on Wednesday, before opening at home against San Francisco on Friday.