April 1, 2007
LOUISVILLE, KY. - The University of Louisville scored the tying run in the bottom of the seventh and plated the game winner in the bottom of the eight to nip West Virginia 9-8 Sunday afternoon at Jim Patterson Stadium and complete a three-game series sweep.
The Cardinals (19-8, 5-1 BIG EAST) wasted no time, taking a 2-0 lead in the first.
Boomer Whiting drove a 1-0 pitch into left to open the inning and extend his hit streak to a career-long 16 games. Logan Johnson followed with his 10th double of the season to plate Whiting, and after a wild pitch advanced Johnson to third, Jorge Castillo's RBI groundout to second made it 2-0.
The Mountaineers (15-8, 3-3 BIG EAST) tied the game at two on a pair of sac flies by Adam White and Tyler Kuhn in the top of the third.
The Cardinals appeared to take control of the game, taking a 6-2 lead with a four run fifth.
After a walk to Derrick Alfonso, Chris Cates and Boomer Whiting singled to load the bases. A sac fly by Johnson gave the Cardinals the lead again, and an RBI single by Burton and a two-run double off the bat of Castillo capped the inning.
WVU struck for a five-run sixth to take a 7-6 lead. Austin Markel took advantage of the winds blowing out, hitting a two-run home run to right and Jordon Yost belted a three-run shot to left.
U of L knotted the game at seven with two out in the bottom of the sixth when Alfonso utilized mother nature, going the opposite way to right center for his second home run of the season.
The seesaw battle continued in the top of the seventh when Trent Ridgley's two out RBI single plated Markel to put WVU back on top 8-7.
Castillo blooped a two-out single into center and was replaced by pinch-runner Cory Dunning
. Justin McClanahan
followed with a double to the gap in right center that tied the game at eight.
Senior Skylar Meade took the hill for the Cardinal the top of the eighth and worked a 1-2-3 inning, striking out two to set the stage for the bottom half of the inning.
Pete Rodriguez drew a lead off walk and was moved to second on a sac bunt by Alfonso. Rodriguez then got a huge secondary lead and made a great read on a ball that got away from WVU catcher Justin Parks to advance to third. With the infield in, Cates hit a hard shot to short, but Kuhn couldn't come up with it cleanly and Rodriguez scored what turned out to be the game winner.
Trystan Magnuson faced the top of the WVU order in the ninth, and after a two-out single by Justin Jenkins, the senior caught Markel looking on three pitches to earn his third save of the season.
Meade picked up the win, improving his record to 4-1 on the season.
"It was a great performance by so many guys, I probably congratulated eight to ten kids standing out in right field that contributed to the win in so many ways," said Head Coach Dan McDonnell.
"They are a very good offensive team and they are going to beat a lot of people in this league, so that was a huge win."
James Belanger started for the Cards and tossed 5.2 innings, allowing five runs, four of which were earned on six hits, striking out two. Colby Wark gave up a pair of runs on two hits and a walk, without retiring a batter.
Chris Dominguez made his third appearance of the season on the hill. He allowed a run on two hits and a walk in an inning and a third.
WVU starter Kenny Durst was roughed up for eight runs on nine hits and two walks in 6.2 IP, striking out five. Billy Gross entered in relief and fell to 3-1 on the season, allowing a run on a hit and a walk, striking out two in an inning and a third.
Cates, Whiting and Castillo each had two hits, with Cates extending his hit streak to ten games, the second double-digit hit streak this season for the senior shortstop. He now ranks seventh in games played (198), sixth in at bats (748), ninth in hits (232) in Cardinal history and has now started 189 consecutive games for the Cards.
Magnuson has worked 22.1 innings this season without allowing an earned run and his career ERA of 3.36 is second in school history.
U of L will host Marshall Tuesday night at 6:00 p.m. ET before a three-game set against Pitt, Thursday, Friday and Saturday at Patterson Stadium where admission is free.