Sept. 21, 2008
ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) - As the countdown to opening day Feb. 20 continues, the UCF baseball team officially got its fall season underway Sunday with a night practice at Jay Bergman Field. The evening was capped off by a four-inning scrimmage that ultimately ended in a 3-3 stalemate.
The Knights will hold practices until late October when the Black & Gold World Series Oct. 21-23 signifies the end of the fall campaign. That event will feature three intra-squad games beginning at 8:30 a.m. each day.
Sunday marked the first team practice for first-year skipper Terry Rooney and his coaching staff. They opened up with some light batting practice, on-field meetings and cut-off drills. During BP, senior Kiko Vazquez got in some reps at third base, while junior Chris Duffy spent time in right field. Most of the returning players kept their numbers from a year ago, but senior left fielder Colin Arnold sported a new No. 21, changing up from No. 28 last spring. Senior righty Matt Manning, who may redshirt the season due to an injury, also will have a new number, switching from No. 26 to No. 12.
When the scrimmage got going (check the bottom of the release for the defensive lineups), senior Jaager Good only gave up a two-out first inning single to junior Shane Brown of the Gold squad but it did not do any damage. Junior Austin Hudson then stepped on the hill and surrendered a pair of unearned runs. Arnold led off by getting on board on the first miscue, and senior Eric Kallstrom lined a single off Hudson's leg and into center. Arnold rounded second and beat the throw to third on the play, while Kallstrom got into scoring position as well. Vazquez and Duffy did their jobs with ground balls deep enough to permit both runners to score.
With a 2-0 lead for the Black team, Good surrendered a double to sophomore Stephen Branca
, yet once again the right-hander kept Gold off the board. Hudson also cruised through his second inning, using his breaking ball at perfect spots in the count to retire the side in order.
Junior Matt Goodyear took over for Good in the top of the third and issued a free pass to freshman Austin Smith, who proceeded to steal second. Senior Josh Siebenaler moved Smith to third on a ground ball, while Brown also walked to get runners at the corners with one out. Senior Brandon Romans cut into the lead on a sac fly to center, and after Brown used a delayed steal to get to second, freshman D.J. Hicks ripped a single through the right side to even it up at 2-2.
On the hill for Gold in the bottom of the third, sophomore Evan Stobbs worked into some trouble on a couple of walks and a fielding error. With the bases loaded and one down, Stobbs picked up a strikeout and a ground ball out to keep things even at two apiece. Entering the fourth and final inning, Gold's offense grabbed the lead on an unearned run, as Siebenaler drove in Smith with two down thanks to a single off the first-base bag.
Hoping to at least salvage a tie, Black threatened again by putting the first two aboard on walks. Although a double-play ball allowed Gold to get two outs, junior Kyle Mills was able to advance to third on the play. Facing a 1-2 count, Kallstrom drove an RBI single between second and third and into left field for the final run of the game, and a 3-3 draw.
Kallstrom finished as the game's leading hitter, going 2-for-3 with a run and an RBI, while he also reached base on an error. For the pitching staff, Good faced eight batters in 2.0 innings, striking out two and not walking a batter. Hudson only surrendered one hit and no earned runs in 2.0 innings, not issuing a walk and sitting down three on strikes.
UCF is back on the field Monday as practice is slated to begin at 9 a.m.
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UCF Black Defensive Set in Sunday's Scrimmage
SP - Jaager Good
RP - Matt Goodyear
C - Beau Taylor
1B - Kiko Vazquez
2B - Jake Huxtable
SS - Eric Kallstrom
3B - Kyle Mills
LF - B.J. Zimmerman
CF - Colin Arnold
RF - Chris Duffy
UCF Gold Defensive Set in Sunday's Scrimmage
SP - Austin Hudson
RP - Evan Stobbs
C - Brandon Romans
1B - D.J. Hicks
2B - Josh Siebenaler
SS - Stephen Branca
3B - Shane Brown
LF - Nick Choto
CF - Austin Smith
RF - Chadd Hartman