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Jack Riedel feels at home lifting Rice

Former Memorial High star propels Rice to victory over Texas Tech

HOUSTON – Rice second baseman Jack Riedel made many trips to Minute Maid Park as a child. On those visits, the Memorial High graduate would imagine playing on the same field where his childhood heroes played.

Riedel lived out those childhood dreams Friday afternoon in the first game of the Shriners Children’s College Classic. He drilled the winning solo home run against Texas Tech to give the Owls their first victory of the season over a ranked team.

Riedel’s shot to right field in the bottom of the seventh was just enough for Rice to secure a 3-2 victory against the No. 24 Red Raiders. The Owls’ junior second baseman attended many Astros games growing up. He even watched some of the best collegiate baseball programs compete in the Shriners Children’s College Classic over the years.

Red Raiders suffer first loss

On Friday he was one of the players fans came to watch. He helped Rice (4-5) hand the Red Raiders (10-1) their first loss of the season.

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“It means a lot,” the University of North Carolina transfer said. “I would come to these games with my parents when I was younger. I envisioned myself playing here, so doing it on this field is really special.”

Wise, energetic Owls

Junior Connor Walsh hit a two-run homer in the fourth inning to give the Owls an early 2-0 lead. Freshman starting pitcher Parker Smith struck out a career-high eight batters over six scoreless innings for the Owls.

The Red Raiders tied the score at 2 with a pair of runs in the top of the seventh. Reidel made sure the tie didn’t last long, though. 

“It’s big,” said associate coach Paul Janish, who was covering while head coach Jose Cruz Jr., was out due to a personal matter. “The guys are excited. The energy in the dugout was really good.”

Perennial Big 12 contender TCU beat Michigan 6-0 in the second game of the three-day Shriners Children’s College Classic. 

Then in the nightcap, Texas A&M had no answer for Louisville, which handed the Aggies an embarrassing 14-5 defeat. 

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