Burckel’s Homer Gives Pokes Second Straight Walk-Off Win Over Southeastern
LAKE CHARLES – One night after their epic 11th-inning victory, the McNeese Cowboys did it again, Brad Burckel hit a walk-off two-run blast over the left-field wall in the bottom of the ninth to clinch the series for McNeese (22-17, 8-6) against Southeastern (17-22, 7-7), 6-4, Saturday night at Joe Miller Ballpark. The Cowboys now sit in a three-way tie atop the conference standings.
The Stone to Stone combination proved lethal as McNeese got a career-high 95 pitch-5.1 inning showing from starter Chance Stone and a shutdown effort in relief by Tyler Stone.
Chance Stone faced either the minimum or one over the minimum in four of five innings. He struck out five batters while yielding three runs on five hits. Tyler Stone earned his first victory as a Cowboy, he struck out three batters while allowing zero earned runs and just one hit in the final 3.2 innings.
The two clubs opened the scoring by trading homers in the second, Southeastern claimed a 2-0 lead in the top half when Tristian Welch connected on a two-run homer. McNeese hit one of their own in the bottom half when left fielder Julian Gonzales unloaded on a solo homer to right – his fourth blast of the season.
Southeastern took a 3-1 lead after a sac-bunt by Champ Artigues with runners on the corners in the sixth. McNeese would load the bases with no outs but would only manage to get one back in the bottom of the inning on shortstop Reid Bourque’s sac-fly.
SLU added another run in the seventh on an RBI single by Rhett Rosevear, the run was unearned as a passed ball put Rosevear in scoring position.
Down to the final three outs, Reid Bourque led off the ninth with a single and scored on Braden Duhon’s RBI double. Duhon came across to score to tie the game at four on Payton Harden’s triple to right.
After Peyton Johnson reached on a fielder’s choice, Burckel sent the 1-0 offering from Gage Trahan over the wall to give McNeese their second straight victory via the walk-off homer.
Record Watch: Tonight’s victory was career victory No. 254 for Head Coach Justin Hill, nine shy of tying the all-time record of 263 held by the late Tony Robichaux.
Next Game: McNeese looks to take the series against Southeastern tomorrow at 1 p.m. at Joe Miller Ballpark.
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