April 13, 2012
Box Score |
LOUISVILLE, Ky. - The 19th-ranked Louisville baseball team suffered a 3-2 series-opening loss to visiting Seton Hall in front of a season-high crowd of 2,873 during the Cardinals' annual Patriotic Game on Friday night at Jim Patterson Stadium.
With their fifth one-run loss of the season and their 3-2 loss at home, the Cardinals dropped to 24-10 overall and 7-3 in BIG EAST Conference games, while the Pirates improved to 18-15 overall and 6-4 in league action. The three-game series will continue on Saturday at 3 p.m., ET, while the weekend finale is set for Sunday at 1 p.m.
On the mound, SHU junior righty Jon Prosinski pitched well allowing just one earned run and one unearned run on seven hits with four strikeouts in 6.2 innings to earn the victory and improve to 5-2 on the season. Relievers Rick Mangione and George Fernandez followed to record the next four outs before closer Benny Mejia escaped a Louisville threat with a scoreless ninth inning to record his third save of the season.
For the Cardinals, junior right-hander Justin Amlung (Louisville, Ky./St. Xavier HS) had his streak of five consecutive winning starts halted after allowing three runs on seven hits with four strikeouts and three walks in 6.0 innings to take the loss and fall to 6-3 on the season. Sophomore righty Dace Kime (Defiance, Ohio/Defiance HS) kept the Cardinals close down the stretch with 3.0 innings of shutout relief which included no hits and just one walk to go with a pair of strikeouts.
At the plate, sophomore outfielder Adam Engel (Loveland, Ohio/Loveland HS) was 3-for-5 with a run scored and his team-leading 25th stolen base, while fellow sophomore outfielder Cole Sturgeon (Owensboro, Ky./Owensboro Catholic HS) was 2-for-3 with a double and an RBI. Senior first baseman Stewart Ijames (Owensboro, Ky./Owensboro Catholic HS) also added two hits and an RBI in the loss. For the Pirates, catcher Dillon Hamlin was the key contributor offensively going 3-for-4 with two RBI and a run scored.
After Amlung worked a scoreless top of the first inning, the Cardinals opened the scoring in the bottom of the frame on an RBI single through the right side by Ijames to plate Engel. Engel started the inning with an infield single and moved to second when junior second baseman Nick Ratajczak (Joliet, Ill./Gulf Coast CC) was hit by a pitch from Prosinski before scoring on the hit by Ijames.
Following a scoreless second inning, the Pirates plated their first run of the night in the third on a one-out RBI single through the left side by second baseman Mike Genovese to score Hamlin from second on a close play at the plate. An inning later, SHU moved ahead for good when Hamlin connected for a two-out RBI single down the right field line to score first baseman Sal Annunziata for the 2-1 advantage.
After a scoreless fifth inning, Seton Hall pushed its lead to 3-1 in the sixth on another two-out RBI single by Hamlin off Amlung, this time through the right side to score outfielder Ryan Sullivan from third.
An inning later, Louisville cut the deficit in half at 3-2 when pinch runner Mike White (East Orange, N.J./Salisbury HS) scored from second on an RBI ground-rule double to left center by Sturgeon. However, the Cardinals unable to ever score the tying run despite getting a runner to third in each of the final three innings of the game.
The Cardinals lost for just the third time this season when outhitting their opponent (22-3 overall) and for just the fourth in 23 games when scoring first. Louisville, which dropped to 18-5 at home this season, is a surprising 0-9 overall in 2012 when trailing after six innings.
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