March 27, 2010
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Matt Barnes allowed five hits while striking out nine batters as the University of Connecticut baseball team defeated No. 7 Louisville 6-3 in its final game of its BIG EAST Conference series at Jim Patterson Field in Louisville, Ky.
Barnes (4-0) threw 8.0 innings as he kept Louisville scoreless and was helped by the UConn bats as both Joe Pavone and Mike Nemeth recorded home runs in today's contest. Additionally, a total of eight Huskies registered at least one hit in UConn's first league victory. With the win, UConn improves to 13-7 (1-2 BIG EAST) on the year, while the nationally-ranked Louisville Cardinals move to 20-3 and 2-1.
UConn held a 6-0 lead heading into the bottom of the ninth as Louisville sparked a ninth-inning rally with a Jeff Arnold solo home run but their drive was halted by UConn as the Huskies earned the three-run victory. Kevin Vance, who came in to get the last out of the contest, earned his third save of season.
The Huskies held their own in a game which was originally scheduled for Sunday afternoon and moved up a day due to incoming inclement weather. They jumped into action early, led by three consecutive doubles. Kevin Vance doubled down the right field line to leadoff the second inning, then scored as Tim Martin recorded his first hit of the year with a double into left center. Both hits were followed by sophomore John Andreoli's fourth double of the season to give UConn a 2-0 lead.
Pavone extended UConn's lead to 3-0 with his second home run of the season in the top of the fourth off of Louisville's Tony Zych. For Zych, it was just the second home run hit off him this year. Nemeth added his own home run in the fifth inning to give UConn a 5-0 advantage as his four-bagger scored Nick Ahmed, who had earned his way on base with a five-pitch walk.
Zych came out of the ballgame after five innings of work. He allowed seven hits and five runs, while striking out 10 Huskies.
UConn didn't stop there as it tallied another run in the seventh inning off of the Cardinals' Bob Revesz as Billy Ferriter singled to short and advanced to second on a Cardinal throwing error. He later scored on an RBI single by Nick Ahmed into left field to give the Huskies a 6-0 lead.
Nemeth finished the game with one run, one hit and two RBI for UConn. Louisville threw four pitchers in today's contest as Zych earned the loss to drop to 1-2 on the year.
The Huskies return to action on Tuesday afternoon as they face Connecticut foe Hartford in a 3:00 p.m. non-conference match-up at Fiondella Field.