The University of Southern Mississippi tied a season by hitting five home runs, including two by Bryant Bowen, as the Golden Eagles powered past University of Texas-San Antonio 15-1 Friday afternoon in the first game of Conference USA doubleheader.
Bowen hit a pair of two-run home runs, while Dylan Burdeaux, Taylor Braley and Matt Wallner each led off innings with homers of their own as the 15th-ranked Golden Eagles (43-12, 24-5) tied a school-record with their 13th consecutive win.
The teams will play a second game Friday at Roadrunner Field because of expected inclement weather this weekend in San Antonio.
Kirk McCarty (9-2) allowed just two hits in six scoreless innings, and for a second consecutive day, the Golden Eagles used the eighth and ninth innings as springboards to pull-away wins.
On Thursday, USM scored eight runs over the final two innings (three in the eighth, five in the ninth) in a 9-3 victory.
In Friday’s first game, the Golden Eagles scored three runs in the eighth and tacked on seven runs in the ninth. The 15 runs were the most in a game since a 16-8 win on April 18 against Nicholls State University at MGM Park.
USM locked down its ninth C-USA series of the season, including all five road sets as the Golden Eagles improved to 13-1 in conference road games. The 24 conference wins surpassed the 2003 team’s 23-win total, and is one win away from tying the C-USA record of 25 wins by East Carolina University in 2004.
The Golden Eagles’ 43 regular-season wins are the most in program history and, including postseason play, the third-most by a USM baseball team. The figure is surpassed only by 45 total wins in the 2004 season and 47 total wins in the 2003 season.
USM went up 1-0 when Dylan Burdeaux led off the game with 10th home run of the season off UTSA starter Noah Trabanino (6-6). Bowen made it 3-0 in the second inning, when he followed a triple by Hunter Slater with his fourth homer of the season.
Tracy Hadley’s RBI-double in the third inning put the Golden Eagles up 4-0, and Braley connected for his 13th home run of the season to lead of the fifth inning for a 5-0 lead.
Wallner led off the eighth inning with his team-high 16th home run of the season, and following a Slater walk, Bowen blasted his fifth homer of the year for an 8-0 lead.
The ninth inning featured three walks, a hit batsman and a couple wild pitches that helped USM cause, but the Golden Eagles also got a two-run double from Burdeaux, a run-scoring double from Mason Irby and a RBI-single from Hadley.
McCarty, who walked two and struck out six, gave way to Hayden Roberts to start the seventh inning.
Roberts, who allowed five hits and a walk while striking out five, gave up a double to C.J. Pickering in the seventh inning, who came around to score the lone run for the Roadrunners (28-25, 15-14) on Aldo Buendia’s single. Roberts picked up his first save of the season, tacking on two scoreless innings to close out the game.
Trabanino allowed seven runs on eight hits in 7 2/3 innings, walking four and striking out four.
USM banged out 14 hits, with Burdeaux and Braley collecting three hits apiece, and Bowen and Hadley two each. Bowen drove in four runs, Burdeaux three and Hadley two, while Slater scored three times.