Tulane Sunk By Cougar Longball In Opener, 8-4

Sophomore right-hander Sean Morgan (4-4) was tagged with the loss after giving up seven runs (six earned) on nine hits while striking out five and walking two in a 5.1-inning start. Senior Blake Walker went the rest of the way for the Green Wave and allowed just one hit – Lincoln's homer – over the final 2.2 frames.

*TULANE BASEBALL FALLS PREY TO LONGBALL IN 8-4 LOSS AT HOUSTON* HOUSTON, Texas–Senior centerfielder Nathan Southard and sophomore second baseman Brad Emaus hit solo home runs in a three-run ninth, but the Cougars belted six solo bombs from the second through seventh innings as the Tulane University baseball team dropped an 8-4 contest to Conference USA foe Houston Friday evening at Cougar Field.

Houston starter Brad Lincoln (7-1) struck out nine and allowed three runs on four hits and a trio of walks in 8.1 innings of work, and helped his own cause at the plate with an RBI single in the third and a one-out homer in the seventh. Cougar first baseman Josh Stirneman and right fielder Matt Weston belted two bombs each, and the six homers set a Cougar Field record.

With the loss, Tulane falls to 19-13 on the year and 2-5 in C-USA action. Houston, meanwhile, improves to 20-13 overall and 6-1 in league play. Tulane will have an opportunity to tie the series on Saturday in game two of the weekend at 7 p.m. Sunday's game is slated for 3 p.m. and will be televised live nation wide on College Sports Television (CSTV – Direct TV channel 610).

The Green Wave trailed 8-1 going into the ninth inning, but Southard lead off the inning with a solo shot – his fourth off Lincoln in the past two games they have faced each other – and one out later, Emaus followed with a towering shot to left to get into the Cougars' bullpen.

Houston countered with Shea Hancock, but the Green Wave continued to attack as freshman designated hitter Nate Simon sparked a two-out rally with a single to right center. Rookie third baseman Seth Henry followed with a walk – his third of the game – and reserve catcher Tim Guidry came through with an RBI-single up the middle.

Senior left fielder Matt Riser fell behind 1-2 in the ensuing at-bat, but battled to even the count and fouled off a few tough pitches before lifting a fly ball to left that Houston's Jake Stewart caught on the run to seal the Cougar victory.

Houston got on the board first when Stirneman led off the second with his first round-tripper of the day, but Tulane answered in the top of the third when Henry drew a leadoff walk, advanced the bases on a passed ball and a sacrifice bunt by junior catcher Ty Wallace and scored on a sacrifice fly by Riser to tie the game at 1-all.

Lincoln gave Houston a 2-1 lead it would not relinquish with an RBI single to left in the home half of the frame, and the Cougars added a pair of runs in the foruth when catcher Luis Flores and Weston opened the frame with back-to-back home runs.

Stirneman opened the sixth with his second homer of the game, Weston followed with another bomb one out later, and Stewart capped the three-run frame with a fielder's choice grounder to third which plated shortstop Travis Cougot.

Lincoln closed out the Cougars' scoring with a shot to left center, but did most of his damage from the mound. He had a no-hitter going into the sixth, and after giving up a single to Tulane shortstop Cat Everett two batters into the stanza, got a double-play ball to thwart a would-be Green Wave scoring opportunity.

He allowed just seven Tulane baserunners through the eight inning – allowing just three to get as far as second base – and faced just five more than the minimum heading into the ninth.

Sophomore right-hander Sean Morgan (4-4) was tagged with the loss after giving up seven runs (six earned) on nine hits while striking out five and walking two in a 5.1-inning start. Senior Blake Walker went the rest of the way for the Green Wave and allowed just one hit – Lincoln's homer – over the final 2.2 frames.

Following the weekend in Cougar Country, the Green Wave returns home to Zephyr Field on Tuesday, April 11, when they take on Nicholls State in a "Business Fan's Special" beginning at noon. For ticket information, contact the Tulane Athletics Ticket Office at 504-861-WAVE. The Ticket Office has recently returned to its usual location on the first floor of the James W. Wilson, Jr. Center. Tickets can also be purchased on-line at www.TulaneGreenWave.com or www.TicketMaster.com.

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