THIBODAUX, La. – Another outstanding starting pitching performance, this time by Cayden Hatcher, was backed by eight hits including a 2-run home run by Troy Cahill as the Nicholls State University baseball team clinched a Southland Conference series victory against HBU with a 3-1 win Saturday night at Ray E. Didier Field.
Following Cole Stapler’s complete game effort in Friday night’s win, Hatcher (2-1) was just as impressive with a five-hit outing in seven innings of work. The only HBU run to come across the plate was due to a three-error first inning and Hatcher went on to strike out six batters en route to a 2-0 start in conference play.
The deficit was short-lived for the Red and Gray as Cahill hit his third home run of the season, driving in Ethan Valdez on a shot to left center in the second. It was the only hit for Cahill on the day, but in the fifth, the Colonel third baseman came up with a run-saving play on defense.
Following a two-single by HBUs’ Zane Otten and a stolen base, Jake Pulcheon hit a slow grounder on the infield and shortstop Joey Morales tried to make a barehanded play to first. The ball trickled away from Morales and Otten rounded third and raced for home. Cahill alerted picked up the ball and fired a strike to catcher Alex Tucker to keep the game at 2-0.
In the sixth, the Colonels gave Hatcher another run on a Norry Galjour base hit. With one down, Friday’s offensive star, Juan Givan, tripled down the right field line and scored on Galjour’s hit through the left side of the infield.
Holding a 3-1 lead after seven, Alex Ernestine and Adam Tarver each pitched an inning of hitless relief to end the game. With the help of the bullpen, Nicholls improved its record to 10-0 when leading after seven innings.
Givan and Morales led the offense with two hits apiece.
The Colonels will look to sweep their second series of the season in the Sunday finale against HBU. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m.