Feb. 28, 2009
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -
Freshman shortstop Ryan Wright's RBI single to centerfield in the eighth inning gave the Cardinals their first lead of the game and sophomore Thomas Royse shut the door in the ninth as the Louisville baseball team won its third straight game overall with an 8-5 victory over Bowling Green on Saturday at Jim Patterson Stadium.
Wright, from Fort Wayne, Ind., connected on a 1-1 pitch from Bowling Green (0-5) reliever Marty Baird to score Drew Haynes from second base, who was pinch running for outfielder Phil Wunderlich, and give the Cards a 6-5 lead. Wunderlich pulled the Cards even at 5-5 with a single to center to score first baseman Andrew Clark, who started the inning with a double to right center.
After Wright advanced to second on the throw home following his single, he then took third on a throwing error by Bowling Green catcher Ryan Schlater. Baird was then replaced on the mound by Ross Gerdeman, who got senior Alec Lowrey to pop up and then walked second baseman Adam Duvall. After Duvall, stole second without a throw, junior catcher Jeff Arnold singled to centerfield to score Wright and Duvall and give the Cards their final three-run margin. Royse pitched a 1-2-3 ninth with a pair of strike outs for his first save of the season.
"We got another solid start on the mound from Matt Lea and we got some clutch hits late in the game from several guys," said Louisville head coach Dan McDonnell. "I'm still not happy with how we're playing and our defensive mistakes, so those are things we must correct if we're going to be the team we want to be."
The Cardinals (3-3) fell behind early on Saturday as the Falcons scored three runs on one hit and one error in the second inning. After leftfielder Dennis Vaughn led off the inning with a single to left field, Logan Meisler reached base on a fielder's choice as Wright was late in getting the ground ball to Duvall at second to put two runners on base. Following a strike out of Mark Galvin and a walk to Schlater, Vaughn scored and Meisler and Schlater each advanced on a wild pitch by Lea to make it 1-0 BGSU.
The lead increased to 2-0 on a squeeze play by the Falcons as Meisler scored on a bunt by centerfielder T.J. Blanton. Schalter scored a play later as Ryan Shay reached on an error by Wright for the 3-0 lead.
Wunderlich started the Cards comeback in home half of the second with a walk and a stolen base. After Wright reached base on a throwing error by third baseman Derek Spencer, Wunderlich stole third for his third base of the season and the second of the inning. After Wright stole second base, Duvall drilled a double to left field score Wunderlich and Wright to cut the Bowling Green lead to 3-2 after two innings.
After scoreless innings in the third, fourth and fifth, the Cards evened things at 3-3 in the sixth off Baird, who replaced Bowling Green starter Matt Malewitz to start the inning. Clark started the inning with an infield single and advanced to second on a wild pitch from Baird. He then advanced to third on a groundout by third baseman Chris Dominguez and scored on a groundout by Wunderlich to tie the game.
Bowling Green came back in the seventh to regain the lead at 5-3 with three hits and one Louisville error against Cards' reliever Neil Holland. Vaughn opened the inning with a single to center, advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt from Meisler and then scored on a double right field off the bat of pinch hitter David Borcherdt. Jon Berti then pinch ran for Borcherdt, stole third and then scored on an errant throw from Louisville catcher Kyle Cheesebrough that glanced off the glove of Dominguez into left field.
Louisville came back to score one run in the home half of the seventh to cut the lead to 5-4. Lowrey started the inning with a single to center, advanced to second on a ground out by Duvall and moved to third on a single to left by Cheesebrough. He then scored as sophomore outfielder Nate Holland sent a ground ball to shortstop and was able to beat out the double-play turn by the Falcons.
Louisville senior lefty reliever Gavin Logsdon sat down Bowling Green in order in the eighth to set up the Cards rally and earn his first win of the season with 1.1 innings of scoreless relief after taking over for Holland to get the final out of the seventh. Baird took the loss for Bowling Green giving up five runs, all earned, on seven hits in 2.1 innings.
For the Cards, Lea allowed only two earned runs on three hits and had three strike outs in five innings, while Holland gave up one earned run on two hits and had one strike out in 1.2 innings.
The final game of the Louisville-Bowling Green series is scheduled for Sunday at 1 p.m. Following this weekend's series, the Cards will return to the road to face Eastern Kentucky in Richmond on Tuesday before returning home to Jim Patterson Stadium for Western Michigan on Wednesday at 3 p.m. ET.
- With his appearance on Saturday, senior Gavin Logsdon is now alone in sixth on the Cards' all-time appearance list for a pitcher with 74. He moved ahead of B.J. Rosenberg (2004-08) and Jason Hobbs (1992-95) and is now four behind fifth-place Brad Mattingly at 78.
- Freshman Ryan Wright is now batting .333 on the season to rank fourth on the team in his first collegiate season. The Indiana native has three doubles, three RBI and has scored three runs through the Cards' first six games.
- Sophomore Phil Wunderlich leads the Cards in hitting at an even .400 with eight hits in 20 at-bats this season.
- Junior Matt Lea, who was 5-0 with a 2.72 ERA last season, has two no-decisions so far this year, but has allowed only three earned runs in 9.1 innings for a 2.89 ERA.
- The Cards have won three straight games for the first time since last year's four straight wins en route to the BIG EAST Tournament title. And the Cards have trailed early in all three wins this season overcoming a 4-0 deficit to beat Eastern Kentucky on Feb. 25, a 4-1 deficit to beat Bowling Green on Friday and battling back from a 3-0 deficit on Saturday.