April 19, 2013
NEW BRITAIN, Conn. - The University of Connecticut baseball team took a 2-1 lead into the seventh inning, but was unable to close the door against USF, dropping the contest 3-2, at New Britain Stadium in the first game of a three-game series. The loss drops the Huskies to 23-14 on the season, including an 8-5 record in BIG EAST play. The Huskies' six-game win streak was snapped, while the Bulls extended their current win streak to 10 straight.
The Huskies were able to muster just six hits during the contest, and were stymied by Bulls starter Jimmy Herget.
Starter Carson Cross (6-2) found himself in a jam in the top of the first when center fielder James Ramsay doubled to left center field to put runners on second and third with one out. Cleanup hitter Jimmy Falla hit a soft chopper to shortstop Tom Verdi (Warwick, RI) which was able to score Alex Mendez from third.
The Huskies threatened in the second, with freshman Bryan Daniello working a two out walk to put runners on first and second. Herget, who entered the contest with an impressive 1.55 ERA, was able to work out of trouble, getting Catcher Connor David to strike out swinging.
UConn was able to breakthrough in the third inning to grab a 2-1 lead when second baseman L.J. Mazzilli ripped a double down the left field line to score Verdi and Billy Ferriter. The two runs scored by the Huskies marked the first allowed by Herget in his last 23 innings of BIG EAST play.
In the sixth, the Bulls pulled even at two when Ramsey singled and stole second. After advancing on a fly out to right field, DH Chris Norton hit a sharp single past the glove of Vinny Sienna to tie the score.
The score remained tied until the eighth inning, when 3B Zac Gilcrease tripled off of the right field wall to score his teammate Falla, who reached on an error committed by Siena.
Sophomore Eric Yavarone singled to open up the bottom of the ninth inning, but was doubled off first base on a terrific sliding catch from SS Kyle Teaf in short left field. Max McDowell flew out to center field to end the game.
Cross labored early, tossing 27 pitches in the first, but settled in nicely against a Bulls lineup that featured seven hitters hitting above .300. He finished with a line of 7.2 innings pitched, allowing eight hits, 3 runs (2 earned), one walk, and striking out six before he was pulled for Dan Feehan in the 8th.
Herget, finished with a line of 7.2 innings, allowing just five hits and two runs, issuing three free passes and striking out seven Husky batters. He improved to 5-1 on the season.
Connecticut allowed the Bulls to swipe five bases during the contest.
The Huskies are back in action tomorrow afternoon in the second game of the three game series. First pitch is scheduled for 1:00 pm at J.O Christian Field. Sunday's series finale has been rescheduled to a noon start.