Jaguars power past Wildcats

Pounding out 24 hits, including seven extra base hits, the University of Houston Jaguars swept past the Wiley College Wildcats on Saturday at Riverside Stadium.

Jacob Atkinson (SO/Harlingen, TX) tossed a complete game and survived a late charge by the Wildcats to win the opening game with a 4-3 decision in a key Red River Athletic Conference contest. The Jaguars then belted three home runs in the second game, a 13-2 non-conference victory.

The Jaguars are now 14-21 on the year and 9-12 in RRAC play, while the Wildcats are 8-32, 3-17 in conference.

The Jaguars scored solo runs in the fourth, fifth, sixth and seven innings and it was enough to overcome a late three-run home run in the opener.

The Jaguars grabbed a 1-0 lead in the fourth when Jonathan Banuelos (JR/Arlington) was balked home with the bases loaded.

Joshua Fonseca (SO/Pasadena, TX) would double home Derek Maciejeski (FR/Tomball, TX), who had singled, for a run in the fifth and the Jaguars would pick up an unearned run in the sixth when Gunner Harrison (FR/Victoria, TX) reached on a three-base error and trotted home on a sacrifice fly by Chase Tamez (SO/Cypress, TX).

Harrison, who went 3-for-5, made it 4-0 in the seventh with an RBI single that scored Garrett Gray-Mathis (FR/Smithville, TX), who had singled.

Atkinson meanwhile breezed through the first eighth innings giving up just five hits before the Wildcats made a run in the ninth. Zachary Pearson and Devin Barnes slapped back-to-back singles to open the inning and Justice Brown followed with his second home run of the series, a three-run shot that pulled the Wildcats to within one with no outs.

Atkinson settled down to get out of the jam to improve to 2-2 as he allowed three runs on eight hits and two walks, while striking out seven.

The Jaguars scored in every inning but the second in the nightcap and scored four runs in the first inning, three of a three-run home run by Fonseca.

After plating an unearned run in the third, Dalton Rodriguez (SR/Bay City, TX) opened the fourth with a solo home run, while Andrew Gross (SR/Alvin, TX)’ fielder’s choice grounder added another run for a 7-2 lead.

The Jaguars blew the game open with a pair of three-run innings in the fifth and sixth.

Wesley Kutac (JR/Schulenburg, TX)’s sacrifice fly plated the first run in the fifth and Harrison added a two-run single.

Gross opened the sixth with his 11th home run of the season and Chase Almandarez followed with a double to right. Fonseca would single home courtesy runner Andrew Richards (FR/Sugar Land, TX) and then eventually score on a wild pitch.

Grant Westmoreland, despite giving up a two-run home run in the second, scattered six hits and walked four while recording 11 strikeouts over six innings to earn the win. Westmoreland had at least one strikeout in each inning.

Cesar Martinez came on to retire all three batters he faced in the seventh to finish off the win.

The Jaguars will return to action Tuesday when they host St. Edward’s University in a 2 p.m. contest at Riverside Stadium.

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