NEW ORLEANS – Punctuated by an RBI sacrifice fly by Hampton Hudson, Southern University overcame a four-run deficit to stun Texas Southern 10-9 Thursday evening during the 2019 SWAC Baseball Tournament.
The game-winning play was Hudson's third walk-off at-bat of the season.
Trailing 9-6 in the bottom of the ninth after a solo shot by TSU’s O.J. Oloruntimilehin, Ashanti Wheatley led off the Jaguars half of the inning with a solo home run of his own. Afterward, Malik Blaise hit a one-out single. Down to their final out, the Jaguars rallied as Hudson singled, and Coby Taylor drove in Blaise with a single. Javeyan Williams tied it with a two-run single to force extra innings.
After Connor Whalen worked a scoreless 10th for Southern, Bobby Johnson singled to put the winning run aboard, and Blaise dropped a blooper to get runners at second and third. Hunter David was given a free pass, setting the table for Hudson to bring it home for the Jaguars.
The defending champions struck first as Tyson Thompson led off the inning with a single down the left field line. Thompson later scored on a Keanu Van Kuren single, but the Tigers stranded a pair of runners to end the inning.
Southern responded in the bottom of the first as Tyler LaPorte slapped a leadoff double to right centerfield. LaPorte scored after Johnny Johnson singled to right, but Johnson was thrown out trying to stretch the play to second. The Jaguars offense stalled to end the frame.
Nic Garza led off the top of the second with a single, moving to second on a groundout before a fielding error allowed Garza to cross home plate to put TSU back in front. Texas Southern continued to find success with its leadoff hitters, as O.J. Oloruntimilehin hit a ground-rule double to start the third. Texas Southern went on to lead by as many as five, carrying an 8-5 lead into the top of the ninth before the game’s frenzied conclusion.