The Golden Eagles opened at home in front of 4,948.
The two teams are now set to play a 1 p.m., doubleheader Friday.
The deciding game of the series takes place at 10:30 a.m., Sunday at The Pete.
2016 (Fr.): Started 41 of 57 games, all at second base…Hit .235 with 26 runs scored and 25 RBI…Had served primarily as late-inning defensive replacement over the final month of the season…Drove in what proved to be the winning run in Conference USA championship game with a ninth-inning, opposite-field single off Rice ace Jon Duplantier...Had seven multiple-hit games…Added six multiple-RBI games…Drove in seven of his season’s runs over a four-game span in February, including two against New Orleans (2/20) and five in a three-game series against Northwestern State (2/26-28)…Scored at least one run over an eight-game span from March 22 at Tulane until April 3 at Charlotte, in which he tallied a season-high three runs in the final game of that stretch…Only allowed four errors at second base for a .980 fielding percentage and did not commit an error at one point over 36 games, which totaled 161 fielding chances…Named to Athletic Director’s Honor Roll during the 2016 fall semester.
Prep: Played for Coach Frank Masters…Four-year letterman, three-year starter, played shortstop and second base…Hit .345 for prep career, with 22 doubles, 9 triples, 127 RBIs and 89 runs scored….As senior, hit .372 with 42 RBIs, eight doubles, 13 stolen bases and 28 runs for the 19-5 Wolves… 2015 Perfect Game Honorable Mention All-America; 2015 Perfect Game Central All Region…2015 first-team All-Gateway Athletic South Conference…As junior, batted .357 with 36 RBIs, six doubles and 26 runs… Second-team all-conference…As a sophomore, hit .333 with 34 RBIs and 21 runs scored.
Personal: Son of Shelly and Shawn Cooper…One brother, Shane; three sisters, Shelbi, Sofia, Sloane…Brother playing baseball at Hutchinson Community College; dad played community college baseball; uncle, Scott Cooper, played in St. Louis Cardinals & Boston Red Sox organizations…Majoring in Business Administration.