The I-45 showdown between the Rice Owls and Sam Houston State Bearkats has gone six innings so far, with Rice leading 3-0.
There were a few scoreless innings before Owls catcher Perrott Geoff hit an RBI single just past Bearkat freshman shortstop Corey Toups. Prior to that, Rice was able to put quite a bit of pressure on Sam Houston pitcher Cody Dickson, who just returned to the starting rotation after being pulled a few weeks ago.
Dickson, one of Sam Houston's sharpest pitchers in the beginning of the season, has struggled with his command lately. He started Tuesday's game throwing a strike on the opening pitch, then tossed three straight balls to walk Ford Stainbeck. In fact, Dickson walked three of his first four batters faced before the collective defensive effort worked him out of the jam.
Andrew Massey came in relief in the fifth inning for Sam Houston, then Andrew Godail and Taylor Holt came on in the sixth. Sam Houston is known to put a lot of relief pitchers on the mound, with skipper David Pierce being a former pitching coach for Rice and the Kats having their issues in the bullpen.
Owls pitcher Andrew Benak only allowed three Bearkat hits through five innings. Rice scored its second and third runs in the Top 6th when Christian Stringer dropped a two RBI double to left field, giving the Owls a 3-0 lead.
Read more about Rice and Sam Houston State baseball at SB Nation Houston.