Bears Rally In Ninth To Defeat Tigers, 10-8
March 10, 2001
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Junior designated-hitter Barrett Smith ripped a two-run home run, a double and two singles to go four-for-five on the day but it wasn't enough, as the University of Memphis Tiger baseball team (7-4) dropped their second straight game to the visting Bears of Southwest Missouri State (7-5) on Saturday afternoon, 10-8.
The SMS explosion in the ninth was too much for Memphis to overcome with four of the runs coming off a grand slam by Greg Mathis. Mathis on the day, went two-for-three with a grand slam and home run, two runs scored and seven RBI.
After being sidelined for the past year, recovering from rotator-cuff surgery, Smith's first game back was during yesterday's 11-4 loss to SMS.
Memphis has now lost four out of their last five contests and two straight at home after beginning the season 6-0.
The Bears got on the board off a sacrifice-fly in the first and then a triple off the wall in rightfield during the second, to go ahead 2-0 after two.
A balk from SMS starting pitcher Brad Ziegler in the fifth got the Tigers on the board and then one inning later, Memphis grabbed the lead when Smith jacked a two-run bomb over the scoreboard in left-center which gave the Tigers a 3-2 lead after six. Memphis added another run in the bottom of the seventh when freshman rightfielder Josh Payne (Houston H.S.) hit a single to shallow rightfield, driving in a run and increasing the Tiger lead by two.
SMS managed to tie the game at four in the top of the eighth, after Mathis slammed a two-run shot over the fence in left. The bottom half of the inning featured another two-run shot by the Tigers, after sophomore catcher Rickey Clinton took a two-out, three-two pitch over the scoreboard in the left-center which gave the Tigers a 6-4 lead.
The Bears then exploded for six runs in the top of the ninth, capped by a grand slam to left by Mathis which made the score 10-6. Memphis mounted a late two-run comeback but fell short, dropping their second straight game.
Corey Lawson (2-1) got his second win of the season, going for one inning and allowing only three earned runs on two hits while striking out four.
The loss was charged to Joshua Cartwright (0-1) who pitched for one-and-two-thirds of an inning and gave up five earned on four hits but did strike out two.
These two teams square off again tomorrow at 1 p.m. for the final game of a three-game set. Nat Buring Field is the site.