HOUSTON - College of Charleston took a 1-0 lead into the seventh inning, but No. 23 Houston mounted a two-out rally and scored seven runs in the seventh and eighth innings to win, 7-1.
College of Charleston (16-7) suffered its first series sweep against a single team since 2009 in Monte Lee's first season, while Houston (19-4) finished with a 4-1 week. The weekend marked Charleston's first series loss this season.
The defeat was a frustrating one for the Cougars who were coming off a heartbreaking end to yesterday's 3-2 decision that ended on an appeal call in the ninth inning. CofC thought it had tied the game with a two-out double, but the run was overturned on appeal.
College of Charleston was going up against the nation's third-best pitching staff in terms of ERA in the Cougars' first real road trip this season.
Nathan Helvey (2-2) was tagged with his second loss of the year, despite registering his first quality start. He lasted 6.2 IP and gave up only two runs, one earned, while scattering five hits. Chase Henry did not record an out as he came in with two on and two out in the seventh, but allowed Helvey's two runs to come home on two singles. Michael Hanzlik struggled in the eighth inning as he gave up five runs on two hits and two walks.
Houston's Jared West (2-1) went eight full innings, allowing just one run on four hits and striking out 11 batters without issuing a walk.
Brandon Glazer recorded Charleston's only RBI of the game which came in the fourth inning. Gunnar Heidt beat out a bunt with one out and then advanced to third on a well-executed hit and run from Carl Wise. Glazer then found a hole in the left side to drive in Heidt.
Helvey was cruising into the seventh, working around a number of bases-loaded jams in the early going to keep Houston scoreless. But with two outs, he allowed a walk and a single and gave way to Henry. After a passed ball that allowed the runners to move to second and third, Josh Vidales knocked a two-run single to put Houston up 2-1.
The home Cougars then found insurance runs in the eighth inning by using a pair of singles and bases-loaded walks, all with two outs, to score five runs and put the game out of reach.
College of Charleston concludes its five-game road trip with a trip to Columbia on Tuesday to play No. 1 South Carolina. Game time is slated for 7 p.m. and can be heard on 910 AM.