Eight-Run Second Propels Tigers Over UT Martin 11-5
March 15, 2011
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - An eight-run second by the University of Memphis baseball team led the Tigers (10-4) to an 11-5 victory over UT Martin (4-11) on Tuesday at FedExPark.
With the win, the U of M is off to its best start under head coach Daron Schoenrock and the 10-4 record is the best record through 14 games since the 2004 season when Memphis had an identical record.
Heath Hatfield (1-1) earned the win on the mound after allowing four runs on three hits in 5.1 innings pitched. Hatfield walked five and struck out four for his first win since May 12, 2010. Blake Myers worked 1.2 scoreless innings in relief and allowed just two hits.
After UT Martin scored four runs in the top of the second, Memphis answered with eight runs of their own. T.J. Rich started off the inning with a single to right center field and Adam McClain belted his first home run of the season to put the Tigers on the board. Bryan Picou hit a double and Rick Russell followed with a double to make the score 4-3. With the bases loaded and nobody out, Chad Zurcher hit a sacrifice fly to right to tie the game and Robby Graham followed with a RBI-single to score J.D. Wallace who reached on an error.
UT Martin would make a pitching change with Memphis leading 5-4, but the Tigers added three more runs to take the 8-4 lead into the third inning. Rich had his second hit of the inning with a two RBI-single. Two batters later, Jacob Wilson scored via a bases loaded wild pitch. Wilson reached on a walk, his fifth walk in his last seven plate appearances. The U of M posted eight runs on seven hits to take the 8-4 lead.
Zurcher reached via a two-out fielding error and Graham drove him in with a single to right. Wilson followed with a two-run home run to left field to give the Tigers an 11-4 lead.
Rich led the Tigers with a 3-for-5 night at the plate and Zurcher and Graham had two hits on the night. Each Memphis player in the lineup recorded a hit in the first three innings as the U of M finished with 13 hits on the game.
Jarrell Rodgers (1-3) was saddled with the loss for UT Martin after allowing seven runs, six earned, on seven hits in 1.1 innings pitched.
Memphis returns to FedExPark to close a seven-game homestand with a three-game set against Eastern Illinois. First pitch is set for 6:30 p.m. Friday.