One night after the Southern beat No. 8 LSU, the Jaguars struggled not to beat themselves.
Despite blowing a four-run lead Wednesday against UNO, Southern walked off the diamond at Lee-Hines Field with a 5-4 victory in 10 innings.
Hampton Hudson dumped a single over a drawn-in infield to hand Southern (19-15) its second consecutive midweek victory after the Jaguars had started 0 for 8 in midweek games this season.
They snapped a 14-game losing streak in beating LSU 7-2 Tuesday, then snapped a nine-game losing streak to UNO.
“It’s good to get wins, be they pretty or ugly,” Southern coach Kerrick Jackson said. “I thought we were in a position where we were progressing through that. But sometimes it’s better to be lucky than good.”
Southern was lucky it didn’t lose by the same score thanks to a base running blunder by the Privateers, who the score at 4 in the seventh inning. They were aided by two Jaguars errors in rallying to tie it but returned the favor in the 10th.
With one out, Ashanti Wheatley singled up the middle and hustled to second when center fielder Wade Raburn bobbled the ball. Wheatley moved to third when shortstop Darren Willis fumbled a grounder by Bobby Johnson. Willie Ward was walked intentionally to load the bases, bringing up Hudson.
UNO moved in its infield to cut down the runner at the plate. But Hampton got enough of the first pitch from John Barr (3-4) to get it over the head of second baseman Salo Iza.
“He threw the pitch, and luckily I pulled my hands through and got it to the outfield,” Hudson said. “Like coach says, sometimes its better to be lucky than good. I saw him put his glove up like a last attempt, and that’s when I realized we got it done.”
Southern went ahead 4-0 on a two-run homer by Javeyan Williams, a solo shot by Hunter David and a run-scoring single by David in the second through fourth innings.
Jackson said the Jaguars' midgame lull might have been a bit of an LSU hangover.
“We discussed it pregame,” he said. “We jumped out early and were going. In the fifth inning we had a lull. Two routine plays we don’t make (turn) into some runs, and we went flat for a little bit. That’s a good ballclub over there. But we had some guys step up and throw some zeroes.”
Zavier Moore, Markaylon Boyd and Charles Bailey each threw and inning of scoreless relief to close out the game.
UNO appeared to have taken the lead in the seventh but only tied the game on two-out bases-loaded single by Beau Bratton.
The home plate umpire ruled UNO’s Evan Francioni was thrown out at third by Southern center fielder Javeyan Williams, ending the inning before Luther Woullard scored from second on what would have been the go-ahead run.
Before that play, Woullard had singled home a run and Francioni drew a bases-loaded walk to cut the Southern lead to 4-3. Bratton had two hits and two RBIs to lead the Privateers (16-17).
“I thought it was the right call,” UNO coach Blake Dean said. “We had many opportunities to win the game. Those things matter. It could have been 5-4 in our favor, and instead we’re the ones with the ‘L’ by our name.”