LAKE CHARLES – Clayton Rasbeary blasted a one-out, bottom of the ninth solo home run to walk-off a McNeese Cowboys 9-8 win on Saturday against Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, capping a remarkable comeback victory for the Cowboys who remain perfect at home on the season.
A chance for a walk-off win didn’t look likely early on as the Cowboys (7-6, 2-0 SLC) fell behind 8-1 through five innings, but clutch relief pitching by Cameron Foster, who entered the game with two out in the fourth after the Islanders plated five runs, allowed McNeese’s offense to begin chipping away at the lead.
“That was really the performance of the game,” said head coach Justin Hill about Foster’s performance. “He gave up that home run (fifth inning) but really pitched well and allowed us the opportunity to get back into the game.”
Foster threw 3.1 innings and allowed just one run and two hits and other than the home run allowed with two outs in the fifth, allowed only one runner on base during his stint on the mound.
McNeese began revving its engines in the sixth with a couple of infield singles and a Corpus error to help it score three runs to cut the deficit to 8-4. In the seventh, Brett Whelton started a rally with a one-out double. The Cowboys got an RBI sacrifice fly by Gabe Vasquez, a single by Reid Bourque and a two-run single up the middle by Payton Harden to cut the margin to 8-7.
Jordan Yeatts tied things up with a two-out, bases-loaded sacrifice fly in the bottom of the eighth to knot the game up at 8-8.
Relief pitcher Isaac Duplechain, who entered to begin the eighth and picked up the win, kept the Islanders off balance, getting six straight outs in the eighth and ninth innings to set up the bottom of the ninth heroics by Rasbeary.
McNeese finished the game with 14 hits with eight of those coming off the bats of Harden (4 for 6) and Nate Fisbeck (4 for 5). Welton and Bourque each added two hits.
The Cowboys, who are 7-0 at home this season, will go for the Southland Conference series sweep on Sunday with a 1 o’clock first pitch. McNeese is expected to start Jonathan Ellisonon the mound.