HOUSTON, Tx. – UCF Baseball (29-21, 12-8) scored two runs in the top of the ninth to even the series against the Houston Cougars (34-17, 13-7), and set up a rubber match tomorrow afternoon, 6-5. The victory was the first win this season when trailing after seven innings (1-14).
UCF opened the scoring in the first inning as Lex Boedicker doubled to left center field to score Noah Orlando from first to lead 1-0. It was the third consecutive game in a row that the Knights have scored in the first inning. Houston responded in the bottom half with a pair of runs to take the lead 2-1.
In the top of the fifth, Tom Josten hit his sixth home run of the season, a two-run blast to right center field to give the Knights a 3-2 lead. Houston once again answered in the bottom of the fifth, scoring three runs to take a 5-3 lead. Noah Orlando hit his fifth home run of the season in the top of the sixth to cut the Cougars lead to 5-4.
Chase Centala worked 4.1 innings, allowing five runs on six hits. He struck out three batters and did not factor into the decision. David Litchfield entered the game in the fifth, recording the final out of the frame to eliminate the threat on the basepaths and hold Houston to a 5-3 lead. He worked 2.1 innings, allowing one hit and striking out one batter. Kyle Kramer relieved Litchfield in the eighth, working the final two innings to pick up his first win of the season. Kramer allowed one hit and struck out one batter, while stranding an insurance run at third in the eighth.
In the ninth, UCF began the inning with a leadoff walk by Noah Orlando. Lex Boedicker attempted to sacrifice Orlando to second, but the bunt went past the pitcher for a single to put two runners on with no outs. Gephry Pena laid down a two-strike sacrifice bunt to move the runners into scoring position with one out.
Andrew Sundean tied the ballgame in the ninth, grounding out to shortstop to score Orlando. Two pitches later, Tom Josten singled through the right side to score Pablo Ruiz from third and give the Knights a 6-5 lead.
TOP 1st | HOU 0 – UCF 1 | Lex Boedicker doubles to left center field to score Noah Orlando from first.
BOTTOM 1st | HOU 2 – UCF 1 | Houston takes the lead in the bottom half.
TOP 5th | HOU 2 – UCF 3 | Tom Josten hit a two-run home run to right center field.
BOTTOM 5th | HOU 5 – UCF 3 | Houston regains the lead in the fifth.
TOP 6th | HOU 5 – UCF 4 | Orlando hits a solo home run to left field.
TOP 9th | HOU 5 – UCF 6 | Andrew Sundean grounds out to shortstop to score Orlando from third. Josten singles through the right side to score Pablo Ruiz from third.
- After 1-6 plate appearances, Andrew Sundean drew his first walk of his career before being driven in by the two-run home run by Josten.
- Tom Josten hit his sixth home run of the season; a two-run shot to right center to give the Knights the lead in the fifth.
- Noah Orlando hit his fifth home run of the year, a solo shot to left field.
- Kyle Kramer picked up his first win in relief on Saturday, working the final two innings to improve to 1-3 on the season.
- UCF was 0-14 when trailing after seven innings, until tonight's come from behind victory.
UCF and Houston will play for the series tomorrow afternoon from Schroeder Park. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m.