Cajuns Edge Tulane in Bizarre Contest, 1-0
Louisiana head baseball coach Tony Robichaux has always said a team needs to learn to win in all kinds of ways.
He'll also tell you he's never won one quite like this.
The Cajuns managed just two hits, sent the minimum of batters to the plate after the first inning and the pitching staff stranded 14 Tulane base runners in a 1-0 win over the Green Wave Tuesday night at Greer Field at Turchin Stadium in New Orleans.
The Cajuns (22-14-1) won their fourth straight game, their longest streak of the season, while Tulane fell to 18-19 with the loss.
Junior College transfer Colten Schmidt (1-0) made his long anticipated debut for the Cajuns and earned the win in relief of Cajuns' starter Evan Guillory. The lefty pitched 2.1 innings of shutout ball, allowing two hits with one walk and four strikeouts.
Dylan Moore pitched the final 2.1 innings, allowing two hits with four walks and three strikeouts and earned his eighth save of the season.
Ross Massey (0-5) took the hard luck loss, allowing just two hits over seven innings, but was outdone by wildness in the first inning, walking four consecutive batters. He allowed just two singles and faced the minimum after the first inning as a double play and a caught stealing erased the two Cajun base runners.
"We had a chance to get rid of him (Massey) in the first inning, but we let him off the hook," Robichaux said. "But give him credit. He settled in and gave his team a chance to win. He showed why he's been a Friday night starter for them."
The three Cajuns' pitchers allowed seven hits and walked six, but made big pitches when necessary as Tulane left the bases loaded in each of the final three innings.
"We had to match them with pitching and defense and we were able to do that," Robichaux said." Evan did a great job and Schmitty came in a tight spot and got their lefties. We wanted to have D-Mo available for six outs and he got seven, so we were pretty much able to execute the plan."
Massey got Ishmael Edwards to fly out in the first inning, but then walked Brad Antchak, Joe Robbins, Steven Sensley and Kennon Fontenot in succession to force home the game's only run. But Massey got a strikeout and a ground ball to escape further trouble.
Guillory allowed three hits and a walk over 4.1 innings and exited with runners on first and second with one out in the fifth. Schmidt came in and got Grant Witherspoon on a popup and Lex Kaplan on a ground out to escape damage.
Tulane got a pair of hits and a walk in the seventh and Robichaux called on Moore with two outs and the junior fanned Kaplan with the bases loaded. Then in the eighth with two out, Moore walked a pair and gave up an infield single, loading the bases again. But Moore got pinch hitter Kody Hoese on a popup to escape the inning.
One more escape was necessary, however as Moore gave up a one out single to Witherspoon. After striking out Kaplan for the second time, an intentional walk to Hunter Williams and a walk to Jarret Dehart loaded the bases for the third straight inning. But again the runners were left stranded as Fontenot ran down Grant Brown's fly ball in the gap to end it.
The Cajuns will host Southeastern Louisiana Wednesday night at M. L. "Tigue" Moore Field at Russo Park beginning at 6:00 pm.
"A lot of times when you don't hit, you come back the next night and hit the ball well," Robichaux said.. "I'm expecting our guys to do that."