April 20, 2008
Box Score in PDF Format
CHARLESTON, W.Va. (www.ucfathletics.com) - Marshall erased three separate leads by the UCF baseball team to post a three-game sweep with a 12-9 victory Sunday at Appalachian Power Park. It was the fourth-straight loss for the Knights, which dropped to 26-16 on the year and 4-11 in Conference USA.
UCF's bats had racked up 30 hits in the first two games of the series, and they continued to motor along Sunday vs. the Thundering Herd (19-19-1, 7-7-1). The Knights finished with 15 hits on the day, led by sophomore Chris Duffy's sixth and seventh homers of the season. Junior Colin Arnold kept his hitting streak alive, moving it to nine games by going 4-for-5 with two doubles, and senior Ryan Richardson amassed three hits in the defeat.
After a scoreless first inning, junior Robert Lara led off the second by stretching a single into a double, and Duffy then sent a no-doubter over the right-field wall on the first pitch from Dan Straily. Even though the bases were now empty, senior Tyson Auer was searching for more and promptly ripped a single through the right side. Following a passed ball, junior Josh Siebenaler lined a 3-1 pitch into left center for a RBI base hit to give the Knights a 3-0 advantage.
That cushion was short-lived, as the Thundering Herd struck for five runs off UCF starter Carmine Giardina in the bottom half, capped off by a two-out, two-run single from Josh Valle.
Not getting down on themselves, the Knights had an answer in the third. Arnold kick-started the frame by lacing a hard-hit ball to short where Adam Yeager tried to snag it, but it found its way into left field for a double. Richardson attempted to sacrifice him over only to place a perfect bunt down the third-base line for a single. With runners at the corners and still nobody out, junior Kiko Vazquez took an outside pitch and fired it through the right side to score Arnold. Lara also came through with an RBI single, and Duffy walked on five pitches to load them up for junior Eric Kallstrom. The shortstop added a fielder's choice that plated Vazquez, giving UCF a 6-5 lead, however Straily was able to pick up the final two outs to limit the UCF production to just three runs.
Back to work in the fourth, a Dwayne Bailey walk and an Arnold single put two aboard vs. reliever Adam Dobies. Eventually UCF got runners at every base with two down only to witness Marshall's second pitcher of the inning, Ian Kadish, escape without a blemish on the scoreboard. That effort set up the Herd's offense in the bottom of the fourth where Brandon Casamassima tied it on a two-out double.
The middle of the order for UCF again got to Marshall pitching in the sixth. Arnold's second double of the day with one out put the go-ahead run on and an error by the right fielder permitted Arnold to reach third. Richardson quickly drove in his teammate with a first-pitch single to left to retake the lead, 7-6. But just like the previous two times UCF went ahead, the Thundering Herd replied in the bottom half, scoring a pair of two-out runs when reliever Austin Hudson stepped on the mound.
When the sixth came to a close, Andrew Hancock took the hill in the top of the seventh and his first pitch ended up being a tape-measure homer off the bat of Duffy. The only question was if it would stay fair down the right-field line, and when first-base umpire Dan O'Connell ruled it stayed left of the pole, Duffy entered his home-run trot. With the game knotted at 8-8, Marshall's Victor Gomez delivered a solo dinger of his own in the seventh, and the Herd concluded the stanza with another run on a balk to bring it to 10-8.
Vazquez kept UCF rolling at the dish in the eighth with a two-out, two-strike RBI single to score Bailey, cutting it to 10-9. Marshall, though, responded once more, sealing it with two runs in its next trip to the plate.
A week off now awaits UCF, and the Black and Gold will return to the field next weekend when it hosts No. 7 Rice April 25-27 at Jay Bergman Field.
UCF baseball single-game tickets are currently available by contacting the UCF Ticket Office at 407-823-1000, or by going online at www.ucfathletics.com, the official site for UCF varsity sports. Also check out UCFPhotos.com, the exclusive fan source for UCF action sports pictures.
UCF - 26-16 Overall, 4-11 Conference USA
Marshall - 19-19-1 Overall, 7-7-1 Conference USA
WP: Andrew Hancock (3-1), 2.0 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 2 K
LP: Brian Griggs (1-3), 0.1 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 0 BB, 1 K
- UCF amassed at least 10 hits in all three contests at Marshall. It also posted double-digit hit totals in every game of the Memphis series last weekend. The Knights have now notched at least 10 base hits in 28 of 42 games.
- The 45 hits were the second most in a three-game series in 2008 (48 vs. Florida A&M Feb. 22-24).
- UCF's two through six hitters (Colin Arnold, Ryan Richardson, Kiko Vazquez, Robert Lara, Chris Duffy) combined to go 13-for-22 Sunday.
- However, UCF gave up a minimum 10 hits for the sixth time in its last seven games when Marshall posted 18 Sunday.
- Chris Duffy crushed two home runs for the second time this year (Feb. 25 vs. Missouri) and the third time in his career. Duffy moved his two-year long-ball total to 15.
- Tyson Auer's hitting streak was extended to eight games, while Ryan Richardson moved his to seven outings.
- The Knights were held without a stolen base for all three games of a series for just the second time this year (at Houston April 4-6).
- For the series, Colin Arnold was 9-for-14 (.643) with four runs, two RBI, three doubles and two sacrifice hits.
- Arnold now has a team-high 13 doubles on the season.
- Starting pitcher Carmine Giardina went 5.1 innings with four strikeouts. He gave up 10 hits and seven runs, but five of those runs came off six hits in the second inning.