Bearkats Play Baylor Tuesday and Wednesday

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The Sam Houston baseball team will look to string some wins together as they play Baylor Tuesday in Waco and Wednesday in Huntsville. The Bearkats (9-9) have won their last two midweek games against ranked teams Texas and Rice.

Baylor (9-11) is coming off of a loss to Houston after winning a pair of games over New Orleans. SHSU lost to Houston earlier this year while the Bears have lost all three of their matchups with Houston in 2013.

The Bearkats lost two-of-three at Dallas Baptist last week but won in the series finale Saturday. SHSU exploded for three runs in the third and five runs in the fourth to beat DBU 12-8. Catcher Anthony Azar went 4-for-6 with five RBI. Andrew Godail pitched six innings and got the win.

“Dallas Baptist is very strong and they’ve got a lot of power arms,” said coach David Pierce. “That being said, we played poorly and pitched poorly and if we don’t shore that up its going to be a long season.”

Shortstop Carter Burgess is batting .342 and leads the team in hits and extra-base hits. Burgess has five doubles and two triples with 11 RBI.

Azar returned from injury versus DBU. The junior is batting .327 and is tied for the team lead with 13 RBI. Jessie Plumlee, who has split time at catcher, started two games at second base over the weekend and is batting .351 this season in 11 starts.

“Azar had a very good week at the plate,” Pierce said. “He looks to be back on track and hitting in the middle of the lineup. Simerly and Plumlee also had strong weeks at the plate.”

Left fielder Luke Plucheck is hitting .339 and is tied for the team lead in runs scored (12) and runs driven in (13). Designated hitter Hayden Simerly has a .310 batting average and also has 13 RBI with a team-leading four homers.

Bearkat pitching has struggled for consistency this season. The Kats have allowed 107 walks in 159 innings at an average of over six free passes per nine innings.

Baylor is led offensively by Nathan Orf. The senior outfielder is hitting .389 with 13 runs scored and 10 RBI. Third baseman Cal Towey leads the team with 18 runs driven in and 14 runs scored. The senior has a .274 batting average with five doubles, one triple and one homer.

“Baylor is very strong defensively and they have solid pitching,” said Pierce. “It’s a good matchup for us. They’ve had some potent offense in the past but do have some new guys in their lineup this season.”

Both games against Baylor will start at 6:30 p.m. The Kats will start conference play Friday as they host Texas A&M-Corpus Christi for a three-game series.

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