Rainey, Cockrum lead Tigers to 4-2 win over CSU

Published 9:13 am Monday, February 3, 2014

Tanner Rainey and Jack Cockrum combined for five of West Alabama’s eight hits as the Tigers defeated Columbus State, 4-2, in a rain-shorted game Sunday at Tartt Field.

Rainey had a pair of doubles and a single, driving in a run, as the Tigers improved to 2-1 by winning the series over the Cougars. CSU dropped to 1-2.

Cockrum chipped in a pair of singles and scored two runs, while Jocobby Robinson drove in a pair of runs for West Alabama, who scored single runs in each of the first four innings.

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“Offensively we did the right things and played solid baseball. Even our outs were quality outs where we moved runners,” UWA head coach Gary Rundles said. “(Tanner) Rainey is going to be a good hitter for us, but like everybody, he is going to have his good days and bad days early on.”

Neal Lambert (1-0) picked up the pitching win in relief of starter Fernando Gonzalez, who allowed a run and five hits in four innings while striking out five. Lambert worked two innings, allowing a run on two hits. CSU starter Caleb Kutsche (0-1) took the loss.

“Fernando did a good job after throwing a lot of pitches early, so when he got to 85 (pitches) after four innings we needed to get him out of there,” Rundles said. “Neal (Lambert) struggled some at first, but settled in for a great second inning.”

Blake Edwards and Brendan Collins had two hits each for Columbus State, with Edwards leading off the fifth inning with a double.

West Alabama continues its six-game homestand to open the season by hosting William Carey Wednesday. First pitch is set for 3 p.m. at Tartt Field. Columbus State meets Tuskegee at Paterson Field in Montgomery on Wednesday.