PRAIRIE VIEW, Texas – Clutch hitting from the middle of Prairie View’s lineup in the eighth inning befell the Texas Southern baseball team as they dropped the middle contest of the three-game series Saturday afternoon.
The game started in dormant fashion as both starting pitchers, Texas Southern’s (8-20, 7-7 SWAC) Brian Williams and Prairie View’s (4-13, 4-5 SWAC) Victor Mendoza, restricted their respective opposition to a combined one hit in the first 5 ½ innings, with the sole instance happening in the top of the third off Avery Chatman’s two-out single to right field.
That trend would ultimately end in the bottom of the fifth for PVAMU as the hosts put themselves on the board with Andrew Garcia’s RBI triple and subsequent score off leadoff hitter Demarie Smith’s base hit.
However, the Tigers finally pushed back against Mendoza’s stout pitching as Jordan Vidato drove a single up the middle, scoring Herbert Watts and reigning SWAC Hitter of the Week Oscar Ponce, tying the game 2-2 at a crucial time as it approached the final third.
Williams almost pushed his arduous start to eight innings as he started the frame with two quick outs but PVAMU retook the lead at 3-2 at the behest of Brayden Johnson’s RBI single which led to a pitching change as Alex Olguin came in from the bullpen. Unfortunately for TSU, the switch didn’t stop the scoring as PVAMU’s Christian Mendez doubled for a 4-2 margin.
Texas Southern had one last chance to tie the game and extend it to the bottom of the ninth with their three to five-holes but it was dashed off closer Derrick Curry’s 1-2-3 inning.
Other than Vidato and Chatman’s batting, Ponce and Justin Cooper provided the remaining two hits for the Tigers as they totaled four by the game’s end. Williams strung together 7.2 innings of pitching which involved five strikeouts.
The Tigers will close out their series against PVAMU at Tankersley Field on Sunday with the first pitch being thrown at 1 p.m.