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Tarleton State wins Houston Winter Invitational opener

Astros hosting four-day event at Minute Maid Park

HOUSTON -- Tarleton State's bats were considerable hotter than the weather, with temperatures in the high 40s inside Minute Maid Park on Thursday morning.

In a 12-hit attack, the Texans blasted Winona State, 15-2, in the opening game of the four-day 2015 Houston Winter Invitational, hosted by the Astros. It was both teams' season opener.

The 10 a.m. CT start with an open roof didn't seem to affect the Texans, who also took advantage of 10 walks from five Winona State pitchers. That was more than enough to make a winner out of Texans starter Matt Herrick, who allowed two runs over his five innings in a game that went only seven innings because of the 10-run rule.

Kevin Meredith had a team-high five RBIs and three hits for the Texans, who broke the game open with a seven-run fifth to go ahead 10-2. In that inning, the visitors managed only one hit with six walks and a hit batsman. The hit was a two-run double by Meredith, who scored twice.

Jonathan Schmitz added three hits and scored three times for Tarleton State, which scored three runs in each of the third and six innings and two runs in the seventh. Texans left fielder Matt Olive reached base five times with only one hit. Herrick struck out four with two walks and five hits allowed. Eythan Lenz and Troyal Yosko pitched a scoreless inning each for the Texans.

Designated hitter Jordan Plamann had two of Winona State's five hits. Plamann and Paul Mutch had the RBIs for the Warriors, with Travis Evanson and Jesus Cazares scoring in the fourth. Winona State starter Chase Blazier allowed three runs in three innings to take the loss.

Richard Dean is a contributor to
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