NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) - The Tulane Green Wave baseball team scored all five of its runs in the first two innings of the game, as senior pitcher Kaleb Roper earned his second complete game victory of the season in a 5-2 victory over the UCF Knights in the team’s American Baseball Championship opener Tuesday night at Spectrum Field.
After getting some big swings from Hudson Haskin and Sal Gozzo, who combined to bring in all five of Tulane’s (32-24) runs on the night, Roper (7-3) stifled and dominated the Knights (34-21) as he finished the game striking out nine and allowing both runs on eight hits with a single walk. UCF stranded 10 runners on base over the course of the night, earning just five hits with runners on base against the second team all-conference pitcher.
Haskin finished a triple short of the cycle on Tuesday, going 3-for-4 with his 10th home run of the season, with three RBI and two runs scored. Kody Hoese went 2-for-3 with two runs scored, while Grant Mathews also had two hits. Gozzo hit sixth home run of the season, as the Green Wave finished with 11 hits in the win.
UCF starter Chris Williams (6-5) pitched seven innings for the Knights allowing all five Green Wave runs on 10 hits, striking out six and walking three. Luis Ferrer pitched the last inning and allowed a hit with two strikeouts.
Dalton Wingo was the only player with multiple hits for UCF, going 2-for-4 with an RBI.
After Roper retired UCF in order to open the game, Tulane got a single to left from Hoese to open the Green Wave line. Hoese had an easy trot in as Haskin came up after and drilled one to the season in left field for the two-run shot to make it 2-0 Tulane.
UCF didn’t waste time in answering back, plating two runs on three hits which included a solo home run being reviewed and called a double instead in the top of the second. In the bottom half of the inning, Luke Glancy drew a walk and Gozzo hit the team’s second long ball of the day with a laser down the right field line to make it 4-2 Tulane.
Hoese got his second hit of the night, and Haskin barreled one to right center for the double to plate the Tulane third baseman to make it a 5-2 Green Wave lead.
Tulane moves on to take on the Cincinnati Bearcats on Thursday evening in Clearwater, with the game taking place 47 minutes following the completion of UConn-Wichita State which is set to begin at 2 p.m. CT at Spectrum Field.