PITTSBURGH, Pa. (May 14, 2006) The University of Connecticut baseball team fell to the Pittsburgh Panthers 11-9 on Sunday afternoon. The loss snaps the Huskiessix-game unbeaten streak and gave senior Nick Tucci (Medford, Mass.) his first loss of the season. UConns record currently stands at 33-16-1 overall and 15-6-1 in the BIG EAST. With the win, the Panthers improve to 20-28 overall and 8-16 in conference play.
The Panthers took a commanding 7-2 lead in the second inning. They scored six runs on six hits off of Tucci. One of the hits was a three-run home run by Jim Negrych.
The Huskies began a comeback in the top of the third inning. Junior Larry Day (Amesbury, Mass.) led off the inning with a walk. Sophomore Pat Mahoney (Des Moines, Iowa) followed with a double to left field that advanced Day to third. Mahoney moved to third and Day scored on a wild pitch during Bryan Malers (Ansonia, Conn.) at-bat. Mahoney scored the second run of the inning on a sacrifice fly by junior Dennis Donovan (Center Moriches, N.Y.).
UConn scored another two runs in the fourth inning to cut the lead to 7-6. A lead off single by junior Matt Karl (Wallingford, Conn.) put the tying run on first. Freshman Dale Brannon (St. Petersburg, Fla.), who was 4-for-4 on the day with two runs and a RBI, placed a perfect bunt to the first baseman that put him on first and move Karl to second. Both advanced into scoring position on a groundout by senior Austin Wasserman (Nashua, N.H.). Junior Matt Untiet (Berlin, Conn.) walked to load the bases. Day singled to left to score Karl and keep the bases loaded. Brannon scored on a sacrifice fly by Mahoney.
Pittsburgh extended its lead to 10-6 after three runs in the bottom of the fifth inning, but the Huskies would not give up. UConn came back with another two-run inning in the top of the sixth. Singles by Brannon, Untiet, Day and Mahoney moved the Huskies around the bases and scored the two runs that would cut the lead to 10-8.
The Panthers added another run to their lead on the bottom of the inning to bring their total to 11. UConn tagged another run onto its total in the top of the seventh inning off a single up the middle by Brannon that scored junior Josh Farkes (Boston, Mass.).
UConn will next be in action on Monday afternoon at Rhode Island. The Huskies will play every day next week, including a three-game home series with Rutgers over the weekend.
Score by Innings R H E
Connecticut......... 022 202 100 - 9 14 2
Pittsburgh Panthers. 160 031 00X - 11 15 0
E - MAHONEY(11); MALER(3). DP - UC 1; Pittsburgh 1. LOB - UC 7; Pittsburgh 12. 2B - MAHONEY(12); FARKES(8); CONLEY(5); MAYER(16). HR - FARKES(2); NEGRYCH(11). HBP - UNTIET; MAYER 2; STEVENS. SF - MAHONEY(4); DONOVAN(4). SB - PARISE(10). CS - UNTIET(1); KARL(2).