The McNeese Cowboys are one step closer to reaching an NCAA Regional.
No. 1 seed McNeese defeated No. 8 Incarnate Word 7-2 on Saturday night at Joe Miller Ballpark to advance to the Southland Conference Championship Series.
HOW IT HAPPENED:
UIW grabbed a 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning when Hernan Yanez hit a sac-fly to center field which brought home Jimmy De Leon.
McNeese responded by scoring one run in the fourth, fifth, and sixth to take a 3-2 lead.
Julian Gonzales delivered the RBI single in the fourth, Kade Morris would then hit his team-leading 10th home run of the season in the fifth. In the sixth inning, Kade Hunter walked, advanced to third on a Brad Burckel single, and then scored on a wild pitch.
McNeese extended its lead to 4-2 after Payton Harden hit an RBI single up the middle to score Reid Bourque. Back-to-back doubles by Burckel and Josh Leslie gave the Cowboys started a three-run eighth inning that was capped off by Andruw Gonzales’ two-run single.
BIG NUMBER: 245
Harden recorded his 245th hit of his career in Saturday night’s victory. That ranks Harden third on the program’s all-time hit list behind Joe Provenzano (254) and Andrew Guillotte (247).
PLAYER OF THE GAME: TYLER STONE
The McNeese relief pitcher Tyler Stone was dominant giving up one hit over three innings of work, while striking out eight batters to earn the save.
UP NEXT: McNeese (33-21) will play for a third-straight conference title May 26-28 at Joe Miller Ballpark against the winner of the Hammond Bracket.