April 9, 2009
PISCATAWAY, N.J. - Freshman George Springer recorded his team-leading ninth homerun of the season and third in the last two days as the University of Connecticut baseball team crushed Rutgers 10-5 in BIG EAST Conference action at Bainton Field on Thursday afternoon.
Springer put the Huskies up 3-0 in the top of the first inning as he homered over the right field wall to give UConn an early lead. Harold Brantley, Jr. led off today's contest with a bunt single and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by senior Dale Brannon. Matt Burnett followed with a single to put runners on the corners before Springer's blast gave UConn the three-run advantage.
With the win, UConn improves to 16-14 overall and evens its record to 5-5 in BIG EAST play. Rutgers drops to 12-18 on the year and 2-8 in the conference.
The Huskies added another run in the second inning to go up 4-0 as sophomore Joe Pavone led off the inning with a double into the left center gap. He then scored as Brantley recorded his 10th RBI of the season with a base hit through the right side of the infield.
After the UConn defense recorded two double plays in the first two innings, Rutgers finally got something going on offense as freshman Dan Perrine hit a two-out infield single to reach base then advanced to second on a wild pitch by UConn's John Folino. Sophomore Michael Lang then singled in Perrine from second to put the Scarlet Knights on the board.
Rutgers recorded four consecutive hits and a sacrifice fly to come from behind and knot the game at four in the bottom of the fourth inning.
The Huskies added three runs in the fifth inning and three in the seventh to climb and take a 10-5 lead, which would eventually be the final score.
Springer added a double in the fifth along with one RBI and one run in that inning, while junior Peter Fatse also doubled down the left field line to pick up two RBIs on the play.
Springer finished the game 2-for-4 with three runs and four RBIs as Folino threw for his first complete game of the year as he allowed five runs, three earned, with 12 hits and eight strikeouts en route to his fourth win of the season.
Rutgers' Beard took the loss for his second of the year as he pitched 4.1 innings while allowing 10 hits and seven earned runs.
UConn will continue its BIG EAST Conference series at Rutgers with a doubleheader on Friday, April 10 beginning at 11:00 a.m. The games were changed to the doubleheader on Friday due to the expected rain coming into the East on Saturday.