April 13, 2014
BEAUMONT – Jacoby Middleton capped his weekend on Sunday afternoon in a way that few can claim. With a strong wind blowing in, as is usually the case at Vincent-Beck Stadium, the junior hammered a three-run homer to left to finish off a 10-4 victory over visiting New Orleans.
Middleton, a transfer from Odessa College, ended the day 2-for-5 with a pair of scores, and he proved to be an offensive machine for the Cardinals on the weekend as he hit .500 for the series and knocked in a grand total of eight runs with five scores.
"We didn't have as good of a start to the game as we'd like, but the bats came around for all of us," Middleton said. "I wasn't trying to do too much this weekend. I just wanted to put the ball in play and hit it hard. Today, I found a way to try to help our team win. Their pitcher threw a change-up down the middle. I had good contact on it, and I just let everything else happen on its own."
LU, which registered double-digit hits for the third straight time this weekend, has now won six consecutive Southland games and sits at 21-15 on the year with an 8-7 league mark. New Orleans dropped to 10-23 and 2-13, respectively.
Sam Bumpers was once again a big part of the offense, finishing 2-for-4 with a pair of runs. The senior has now recorded at least one hit in 20 consecutive games, which ranks third all-time in the school record books. Jude Vidrine knocked in two scores and ended 1-for-2 with two walks, and Jake Sutton went 3-for-3.
Both teams would score a run in the first, but New Orleans regained the lead off of LU starter Lance Warren in the third, picking up four hits and two runs before an unorthodox 4-3-6 double play ended the threat. Warren would leave the mound after the frame, ending with three runs (two earned) on a walk and five hits.
Singles by Bumpers, Middleton and Markum pulled one back for the Cards in the bottom half of the frame.
J.T. Autrey took over on the mound for Warren and tossed three innings frames before UNO pushed a run across in the seventh. He’d end the game with five innings of two-hit ball with a pair of walks to improve to 5-2 on the year.
Two errors came back to haunt the Privateers in the fifth. UNO starter Darron McKigney appeared to be out of trouble before an errant throw from shortstop Samuel Capielano extended the frame. A Sutton single in the ensuing at-bat tied things up, and then a Vidrine single and another errant throw, this time from centerfielder Alexander Mitchell, allowed two more to cross to give the Cards their first lead of the game at 5-3.
After singles from Brandon Provost and Bumpers scored two more runs in the eighth, Middleton put it officially out of reach with his second home run of the season.
LU will return to action on Tuesday as perennial power Rice will make the trek to Beaumont. First pitch is scheduled for 6:30 p.m.