MELISSA, Texas – The Tigers of Texas Southern University picked up a big win for their first victory of the season as they defeated the Kansas Jayhawks 8-3 in the second game of a doubleheader Saturday.
Christian Sanchez hit two home runs and Mason Furlong pitched seven scoreless innings as the Tigers improved to 1-6 on the season after defeating their opponent from the Big 12 Conference.
After dropping the first game of the doubleheader to Kansas 19-13, the Tigers scored the first eight runs of the game as Furlong took a shutout into the eighth inning. A three-run homerun from Skyler Messinger was the lone blemish on Furlong’s stat line.
Furlong pitched seven and two-thirds innings for the Tigers, striking out eight batters while scattering four hits. Robert Loza pitched the final one and one-third innings for TSU, striking out a batter while allowing just one hit.
The Tigers wasted no time getting on the scoreboard, as Olajide Oloruntimilehin knocked a two-run home run in the top of the first inning, scoring himself and Sanchez. It was the first of three home runs given up by KU starting pitcher Eli Davis.
Up 3-0 after two innings, the Tigers added three more runs in the top of the fifth when Sanchez hit the first of two solo home runs with one out in the inning. Three batters later, Nic Garza hit a two-run home run, which also brought Keanu Van Kuren home; Van Kuren hit a double in the inning.
Sanchez led off the eighth inning with his second home run of the game. He had three hits in the game, while Garza collected two hits off Jayhawk pitching.
Meanwhile, Furlong was nearly unhittable for the first seven innings of the game. He gave up a single to the first batter of the game he faced, and then did not allow another hit until the eighth inning, when the Jayhawks rallied for their three runs. Furlong threw 142 pitches Saturday.
The opening game, won by Kansas 19-13, featured 10 home runs – five by each team. Oloruntimilehin knocked two in the opener, while Sanchez, Van Kuren, and Levi Dixon had one home run apiece. Van Kuren’s blast was a grand slam in the top of the first inning.
The Tigers led 11-10 after three innings before Kansas rallied for seven runs in the bottom of the fourth inning.
TSU concludes its four-game series against Kansas on Sunday. First pitch is scheduled for 11 a.m.