FAU Baseball: Owls win two out of three at Louisiana Tech

The Owls outscored LA Tech 21-15.


Erika Fletcher

University Press stock photo of senior left-hander Hunter Cooley.

The FAU Owls baseball team (30-18, 15-9 C-USA) traveled to Ruston, La to face the Louisiana Tech University (LA Tech) Bulldogs (33-17, 15-9 C-USA). FAU won two of the three games over the weekend series.

Game 1 (Friday, May 6): FAU 10, LA Tech 2

FAU beat LA Tech 10-2 on Friday night behind a seven-run fifth inning.

Despite a slow start, the Owls took a 1-0 lead in the fourth inning with an RBI single from sophomore left-fielder Dylan Goldstein, allowing sophomore right-fielder Gabriel Rincones Jr. to score from second base.

In the fifth inning, FAU plated seven more runs on just five hits. Graduate designated hitter Tyler Kelder led off with a solo home run to left field. LA Tech got back-to-back outs and appeared to have the inning wrapped up, but the Bulldogs couldn’t find a third out. 

With the bases loaded, FAU scored on three plays back-to-back. Goldstein hit an RBI single to the pitcher and allowed sophomore shortstop Armando Albert to score from third base. Freshman third baseman Jackson Ross followed with another RBI single infield, with Rincones Jr. scoring on the play. Sophomore second baseman Steven Loden got hit by a pitch, allowing Schanuel to score from third and giving the Owls a 5-0 lead.

FAU kept piling on the runs, as Kelder drew a walk, and sophomore catcher Caleb Pendleton knocked a two-RBI single, extending the lead to eight.

In the top of the seventh, Pendleton singled to center field, allowing Kelder to score from second base. Then in the top of the eighth, Goldstein knocked a solo home run over the center-field wall for his eighth of the season. 

The Owls couldn’t hold on to the shutout to finish the game. In the bottom of the eighth, the Bulldogs had senior infielder Tyler Young on first base and freshman infielder Thaxton Berch on third. Sophomore outfielder Cole McConnell hit a two-RBI double making the score 10-2 and ending the shutout bid after eight innings.

Senior left-handed pitcher Hunter Cooley had a solid performance as he kept a clean sheet for the Owls for the first eight innings. Cooley allowed seven hits, one walk, two runs, and earned five strikeouts. He now has a 7-3 record for the season.

Matthew Aguilar-Lizzi is a staff writer at the University Press. For more information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected], or tweet him @mattaguilarUP.

Game 2 (Saturday, May 7): LA Tech 11, FAU 6

After a dominating performance on the mound the night before, the Owls allowed at least one run in all but one inning in Saturday’s loss.

Sophomore center-fielder Gabriel Rincones Jr. homered to right field for FAU in the first, but that lead was short-lived. The Bulldogs scored twice in the bottom half of the inning via a two-run home run to right field from sophomore center-fielder Cole McConnell.

Redshirt sophomore left-handed pitcher Marc DeGusipe started the game for FAU and received his second loss of the season. He stepped off the mound after conceding the homer in the first inning. 

Senior designated hitter Jackson Lancaster knocked a two-run homer over the right-field wall in the second inning to extend LA Tech’s lead to 4-1.

The Bulldogs kept the momentum going into the third by plating another run via a sacrifice fly. Junior first baseman Philip Matulia singled, McConnell doubled, and sophomore catcher Jorge Corona flew out.

LA Tech tacked on three runs in the fourth inning. After a walk, two doubles, and two runs in the inning, FAU’s first relief pitcher, redshirt senior right-hander Jacob Josey, subbed out and sophomore southpaw Sam Drumheller entered. Following the pitching change, Drumheller allowed an RBI double to increase the lead to 8-1.

In the sixth inning, Louisiana Tech plated a run via two walks, a passed ball, a fielder’s choice, and a double.

The Owls responded with three runs in the top of the seventh inning. Graduate designated hitter Tyler Kelder doubled, and sophomore catcher Caleb Pendleton singled to combine for the first run. Sophomore shortstop Armando Albert singled, Rincones Jr walked, and sophomore first baseman Nolan Schanuel singled for two more runs, shortening the deficit to 9-4.

The Bulldogs scored a run in the bottom half of the seventh inning via a double, a wild pitch, and a fielder’s choice. Senior right-fielder Steele Netterville homered in the eighth for the team’s 11th run of the night.

In the top of the ninth, Albert was hit by a pitch, Rincones Jr. doubled, and Schanuel singled for a pair of runs to leave the score at 11-6.

Bryce Totz is the Sports Editor at the University Press. For more information regarding this or other stories email him at [email protected], or tweet him @brycetotz. 

Game 3 (Sunday, May 8): FAU 5, LA Tech 2

 FAU was off to a fantastic start offensively in Sunday’s game and never looked back as the Owls secured the win and the overall series.

Graduate student starting pitcher Tyler Burnham was solid on the mound. He pitched six innings, and allowed one earned run on three hits, and struck out seven batters. 

Sophomore right-fielder Gabriel Rincones Jr. reached base on a fielding error in the top of the first. In FAU’s next at-bat, sophomore first baseman Nolan Schanuel launched a homer to right field to give the Owls the 2-0 lead.

In the top of the second inning, sophomore shortstop Armando Albert singled home senior catcher Nicholas Toney, extending the lead 3-0. Scoring remained quiet for both sides until Toney homered to right field in his next at-bat, his first of the season. 

Schanuel added to the lead later in the second inning when he doubled to bring Rincones Jr. home and give the Owls a 5-0 lead. Burnham allowed a solo home run in the bottom half of the inning for his only earned run of the day. 

Sophomore right-handed pitcher Robert Wegielnik came in to relieve Burnham to start the seventh inning. He pitched three innings, and allowed one run on two hits, and struck out five batters.

Wegielnik earned the save, his sixth of the season. Schanuel added two hits, three RBIs, and scored one run. 

Kevin Garcia is a staff writer for the University Press. For more information regarding this or other stories, email him @[email protected], or tweet him @kevingar658.