June 4, 2010
NORWICH, Conn. - Oregon scored three runs in the top of the ninth to edge the University of Connecticut baseball team 5-3 in the Huskies' first game of the NCAA Tournament in front of a crowd of 5,684 on Friday night at Dodd Stadium in Norwich, Conn. UConn will face Central Connecticut State University at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, June 5.
The Huskies (47-15), who are making their 16th NCAA Tournament appearance in 2010, took an early 2-0 lead in tonight's contest led by a solo home run by Mike Nemeth.
The Ducks tied the contest in the sixth with a two-run blast over the left field wall.
In the top of the ninth, the Ducks tallied three runs to take the late inning lead. UConn rallied in the bottom of the ninth as Nick Ahmed recorded an RBI single to left center to score Pierre LePage and cut the Oregon lead to two but it wasn't enough as Oregon's Madison Boer recorded the last out on his second strikeout of the night for his fourth save this season. The Ducks will advance to take on Florida State at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday at Dodd Stadium.
Prior to tonight's match-up, the Huskies had not lost back-to-back contests since falling to Louisville on March 26 and 27. UConn has now lost three of its seven postseason games this year, despite recording at least one hit in every inning.
Nemeth drove the ball down the right field line and over the wall to give UConn a 1-0 lead in the second inning. The Huskies tallied another run in the third as John Andreoli crossed the plate on a throwing error by Oregon short stop KC Serna.
The Ducks' threatened in the top of the fourth as they put runners on first and second with no outs. Oregon's Eddie Rodriguez grounded out into a double play after making what would be their greatest scoring threat of the game before the ninth when Nemeth sealed the deal with an outstanding stretch and catch at first. Greg Nappo remained in control as he retired the next batter with his second strikeout of the night, keeping the Ducks off the score board.
Oregon tied the ballgame in the sixth with a two-run home run by Serna as Jett Hart scored on the play after walking to reach base. Thornton went six innings for the Ducks, allowing eight hits and two runs, while striking out six before coming out of the ballgame with a no decision.
Nappo threw 7.2 solid innings for the Huskies despite giving up his 11 homer of the year. The redshirt junior also struck out four and allowed four hits and two runs. Scott Oberg came in for the Huskies to get the final out of the eighth and went a total of 1.1 innings for UConn. Oberg allowed three runs, two of which were earned, and two hits.
In the top of the ninth, Oregon loaded the bases with no outs on a leadoff single before recording by back-to-back bunts as the Huskies' attempts to get the lead runners were unsuccessful. Oregon was able to capitalize on the miscues and put three runs on the board to take the lead and eventual win.
Despite out-hitting the Ducks 11-6, UConn left nine runners on base in the ballgame, while Oregon stranded four.
The Huskies will face the Blue Devils on Saturday at 2:00 p.m. at Dodd Stadium. All UConn games will be streamed live at UConnHuskies.com.