Houston blanks Stephen F. Austin

NACOGDOCHES, Texas - University of Houston pitchers Donnie Joseph, Barry Laird, Chris Wright and Bryan Tully combined to limit Stephen F. Austin to only five hits in a 4-0 shutout win at SFA’s Jaycees Field on Tuesday.

Laird earned the win and evened his season record at 1-1 after limiting the Lumberjacks to two hits with three strikeouts in three innings. However, the Baytown native was only part of a strong pitching effort by the Cougars.

Freshman southpaw Donnie Joseph earned the start and set the tone for the entire game, holding the Lumberjacks to only three hits in the first four innings.

SFA was able to garner only five hits, with Zach Gardner and Chris Smith nabbing two apiece. Jared Pitts had the other hit. Smith was 2-for-2 with a walk and Gardner was 2-for-4 and extended his hit streak to 14 games.

Houston (18-14) will return to action on Friday when the Cougars host crosstown-rival Rice, ranked fifth in the NCBWA poll, in a key Conference USA series. Stephen F. Austin (18-17) will jump back into Southland Conference play this weekend, facing Texas A&M-Corpus Christi Fairgrounds Field in Robstown, Texas.

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