HOUSTON – The Tigers of Texas Southern University opened the home portion of their 2019 baseball schedule Friday with a 1-0 win over Southern.
Oscar Ponce’s two-out single in the bottom of the eighth inning to score Keanu Van Kuren from second base proved to be the only run the Tigers (3-12) needed as they improved to 2-2 in Southwestern Athletic Conference play.
Aron Solis, the SWAC’s preseason Pitcher of the Year, picked up his first win of the season as tossed a complete-game shutout. The senior from League City, Texas, struck out 11 batters and walked four while allowing only three hits.
Southern’s starting pitcher Jerome Bohannon matched Solis for six innings, striking out nine batters and allowing only three hits. Relief pitcher Rhett Hebert took the loss after giving up the lone run of the game in the eighth inning.
The visitors had opportunities to score but TSU’s defense and pitching was up to the challenge each time. Johnny Johnson came the closest to scoring, leading off the sixth inning with a single and moving up two bases on a pair of wild pitches. However, Solis induced Ashanti Wheatley into a groundball out to second baseman Victor Cruz to end the inning.
Cruz also had a good day at the plate, knocking two base hits a
Solis seemed to get stronger as the game wore on, as he allowed only two baserunners over the last three innings.
Southern (9-8) lost its first conference game of the season, as they fell to 3-1 in the SWAC West Division play.
The Tigers and Jaguars continue their series Saturday. First pitch is scheduled for 2 p.m.