Commodores secure milestone win

March 5, 2018

Final Stats

HOUSTON – Vanderbilt produced multiple runs in each of the first three innings and received a sensational performance from JJ Bleday, defeating Houston 9-4 on Sunday night at Minute Maid Park.

After dropping the first two of the Shriners Hospitals for Children College Classic, the No. 12 Commodores (10-3) were able to celebrate a milestone win for head coach Tim Corbin, who became the program’s all-time winningest coach with his 656th victory. The 16th-year head man surpassed former skipper Roy Mewbourne, who led Vandy from 1979-2002. The win came during a highlight-reel game for Bleday, who belted a two-run home run and stole extra-bases away on two occasions in right field courtesy of a diving grab and sliding catch.

Vanderbilt took advantage of 10 Houston (5-5) walks and three hit by pitches. The Dores answered a leadoff homer from the Cougars’ Landon Etzel with four runs in the home half following a leadoff free pass. Stephen Scott and Ethan Paul each provided RBIs and Bleday belted his fifth-career home run into the right-field bleachers with two down and Pat DeMarco aboard. An inning later, DeMarco provided the two-out damage, lining a three-run double into right-center as part of his team-leading eighth multi-hit game.

Houston pitching continued to struggled with its command as Vanderbilt loaded the bases on a Jayson Gonzalez leadoff single and pair of walks. Scott drew a four-pitch, bases-loaded walk to force in a run and Austin Martin raced home one hitter later on a wild pitch to make it 9-2 Vandy.

Mason Hickman (3-0) picked up his third win in relief, scattering five hits while allowing two runs in four innings. The right-hander also fanned five in relief of starter Chandler Day, who permitted five hits and a pair of runs in three innings.

The Commodores continue their 10-day, seven-game road trip on Wednesday with a visit to Long Beach State. The California tilt continues over the weekend as Vandy takes on UCLA and USC before closing the trip against TCU at Dodger Stadium.

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