May 26, 2018

UNO Falls Just Short in Title Game

Privateer CF Orynn Veillon
After beginning by upsetting the tournament's #1 seed, dropping a winner's bracket game to Houston Baptist in the wee hours of Saturday morning, then coming back to beat HBU on Saturday afternoon, the Privateers finally fell to Northwestern State, 7-5, in the tournament title game.

With its entire pitching staff running on empty, New Orleans went to Bryan Warzek, who threw 110 pitches in Thursday's victorious start, but Warzek was roughed up early as the Demons took a 4-2 lead in the second.  NWST extended the lead to 5-2 before the Privateers fought back with a three-run fifth to tie the score.

William Griffin extended himself way beyond his comfort level in relief, pitching effectively over 4 2/3 innings and 79 pitches in his first appearance of the tournament. But Griffin was taken deep in the seventh by David Fry, the SLC Player of the Year, and the Demons retook the lead at 6-5.  Northwestern State added another run that inning to conclude the game's scoring.

Orynn Veillon concluded the season with a 3-RBI performance, keeping the Privateers in the hunt all night. UNO finished 29-32.

May 24, 2018

Halfway There: Privateers 2-0 in SLC Tourney

Veillon's two-RBI double
provided the winning margin
The lowest seed in the Southland Conference baseball tournament continues to surprise, as the upstart Privateers knocked off Houston Baptist 3-1 in a winner's bracket game on Thursday evening.

Bryan Warzek wasn't his sharpest but fought through trouble at numerous points, pitching six quality innings and surrendering just one run. In the bottom of the third inning, Pearce Howard walked with the bases loaded to tie the game at 1-1.  Then, Orynn Veillon crushed a double to the wall in left field to plate two more, and that improbably ended the scoring for the evening.

John Barr pitched his second consecutive scoreless two-inning relief stint, setting up Reeves Martin's second consecutive save.

New Orleans now gets to sit back and watch Houston Baptist and Sam Houston burn some more pitching at noon Friday before the winner of that game takes on the Bucs sometime Friday evening.  The HBU-SHSU winner will have to beat UNO twice in order to reach the tournament championship game.

On the other side of the bracket, Northwestern State sits in the driver's seat after rallying to defeat Southeastern Louisiana, 5-1.  SLU and Nicholls will start tomorrow's proceedings with a 9 a.m. elimination contest.

Official box score
Discussion forum tournament thread

May 23, 2018

Privateers Upset Top-Seeded Bearkats

Bratton's two-run triple tied the
game in the 8th inning on Wednesday
In game one of the Southland Conference baseball tournament in Sugar Land, Texas, the tournament's lowest seed, #8 New Orleans, sprung an upset on top-seeded Sam Houston in 10 innings, 4-3.

Unable to start ace lefty Bryan Warzek, the Privateers faced even longer odds than one might see in an 8/1 game. Warzek, who did not throw until this past Saturday due to weather complications, was not fully rested by the start of the SLC Tournament. New Orleans had to rely on the volatile John Michael Stephens, who has been the team's most up-and-down performer.

Fortunately, UNO got the good version tonight, and his seven strong innings against the formidable Bearkats put the Bucs in position to win. Still, New Orleans was down 3-1 in the eighth until Beau Bratton's two-run triple tied it up.  The Privateers got it to extras, when they were able to scrape across one more run via Cody Ducote's sac fly.

After some quality relief work from John Barr, Reeves Martin shut the door on SHSU in the 10th and the Privateers had the victory.

New Orleans will play tomorrow night at 7:00ish against Houston Baptist, who defeated Central Arkansas 14-4.

Official box score
Discussion forum tournament thread

April 12, 2018

Privateers Finish 8-2 Road Trip With Win

Pearce Howard's two-run single won
Sunday's nightcap at Lamar in the 12th
The Privateer baseball team left for its 10-day road trip on the verge of falling off a cliff, and returned in the thick of the race to qualify for the Southland Conference tournament.

New Orleans continued its odyssey this past weekend in Beaumont, claiming two out of three games at last-place Lamar, with the only Cardinal victory somehow coming over UNO superstar hurler Bryan Warzek, who was uncharacteristically wild in walking six in just four innings of work.

The Privateers, however, came up with 21 innings of superb work from the rest of the staff in a Sunday doubleheader sweep of Lamar, allowing just two runs for the entire day.  UNO won the first game 6-2, and the nightcap 2-0 in 12 innings.

On Tuesday, if the baseball gods had a truly wicked sense of humor, they would have taken advantage of a third straight close UNO-Tulane contest by gifting the Bucs a third consecutive win via wild pitch.  But in reality, the Green Wave took this round on a walkoff double, claiming a 4-3 victory over the Pelican Cup champs.

Finally, on Wednesday, New Orleans rallied past Southern in Baton Rouge, 7-5. Collin Morrill had three hits, and Devin Morrill and Beau Bratton added two apiece to fuel the Privateer offense, while the pitching staff struck out 17 Jaguars.

UNO returns home 17-17 overall and 7-8 in the Southland Conference, placing them in eighth place (eight teams qualify for the tournament).  A big series awaits back at Maestri Field against McNeese beginning Friday night at 6:30 p.m.

April 03, 2018

Privateers Halfway to Perfect Road Trip

The Privateers left Maestri Field last Sunday with a 9-15 overall record and a 2-7 league record, facing a 10-game road trip that threatened to completely unravel their season.

After claiming the Pelican Cup at Tulane this evening, the Privateers are now 5-0 on that road trip, with a conference series looming at cellar-dwelling 6-22 Lamar this weekend.

Bryan Warzek fanned 16
in Saturday's win
For the second time in two games against the Wave, the Privateers won on a wild pitch in the ninth inning. This time, it was a lower scoring affair that ended 3-2 in favor of the silver and blue.

The road trip began with a quality 8-2 victory in Mobile over a solid South Alabama team. It continued in Corpus Christi over the weekend, where UNO took the first game 13-8, the second game 2-0, and rallied from three runs down to complete the sweep, 6-5.  The highlight of the series was Bryan Warzek's dominant 8-inning, 16-strikeout performance in the middle game.

Now the Bucs head to Beaumont with another sweep on their minds against last-place Lamar.  The road trip will conclude after that with another midweek game uptown against Tulane and a game in Baton Rouge at Southern.