PRAIRIE VIEW, Texas – Two days after putting up 34 runs in a blowout win at Prairie View A&M, the Tigers of Texas Southern University claimed their first Southwestern Athletic Conference series victory Sunday with a 7-5 win over the Panthers.
Four different TSU hitters knocked three base hits apiece for the Tigers (6-16, 4-5 SWAC West). Nic Garza and Oscar Ponce led the way for the Tigers at the plate, as each player homered as part of their three-hit games.
Noe Guerrero III picked up his first victory of the season for the Tigers. Guerrero tossed eight and one-third innings while scattering six hits and allowing only one earned run; he also struck out four batters.
The Tigers wasted little getting on the scoreboard, as Garza led off the game with a home run to right field. After Olajide Oloruntimilehin and Christian Sanchez reached base, Tyson Thompson knocked an RBI single to score Oloruntimilehin and put the Tigers up 2-0.
TSU added three more runs in the third inning to stretch its lead to 5-0. Sanchez led off the inning with a double – his second of three hits Sunday. He moved to third on a passed ball, and would then steal home with Thompson at the plate. Thompson also had three hits in the game.
Two batters later, Ponce knocked a two-run home run to score himself and Keanu Van Kuren.
Leading 5-1 heading into the sixth inning, the Tigers added a couple more insurance runs that proved to be crucial later in the game. Garza knocked an RBI single to score Ponce from second base; later in the inning, Austin Garcia scored on a wild pitch.
The extra two runs made the difference as Prairie View A&M rallied for four runs in the bottom of the ninth inning. Relief pitcher Christian Suarez inherited a bases-loaded situation, and got the last two outs via strikeout to end the game.
Sunday’s win gave the Tigers their second of the series with Prairie View A&M. The Panthers won Saturday’s contest 5-3.
The Tigers return to action Tuesday when they open a two-game series at Baylor. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 p.m.