The college baseball season is a marathon. It's nice to sprint out to a lead at the start, but the finishing kick at the end is just as important. And with seven games left in the Conference USA baseball tournament at Rice's Reckling Park, eight teams are kicking into full sprints.
John Royal It's Conference USA baseball tournament time
The most impressive kick so far is from the Rice Owls. The Owls went at a steady pace for the regular season, never getting too big a lead, winning the conference regular season title on the last day of the season. They've now won their first two games of the tournament with astounding ease, the team's pitching staff shutting down the opposition with ease, the offense actually showing some life. And if they can shut down the Memphis Tigers (also 2-0 in the tournament) tomorrow morning, the Owls will play for the tournament title and a NCAA regional bid on Sunday afternoon.
The Houston Cougars sprinted out to a quick start this season, but faded as the regular season hit the midpoint. But they started to get back into gear the last weeks of the regular season, and after yesterday's 9-4 win over high-seeded East Carolina, the Coogs find themselves in a strong position to battle Rice on Sunday -- if the Cougars can upset Southern Miss this afternoon and take out Tulane tomorrow.