@MemphisBaseball Falls in Conference Opener to Temple, 3-1
March 21, 2014
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Memphis starter Caleb Wallingford allowed one earned run on three hits over 7.2 innings, but Temple slipped past the Tigers 3-1 in the conference opener on Friday at FedExPark.
After the Tigers (14-7, 0-1 American) stranded a runner on second in the second and third innings, Temple (6-9, 1-0 American) put their first two hits on the board in the fourth with back-to-back singles. A fielder's choice up the middle resulted in an out at second, but the Owls drove in the go-ahead run with a sacrifice fly to centerfield.
Memphis stranded the potential tying run at third in the fifth and again stranded a runner in scoring position in the seventh. In the fifth, Bryce Beeler singled with one out and a wild pitch put him on third with two out. The Tigers left Beeler stranded at third after a pop up on the infield and didn't get another scoring chance until the seventh. Tucker Tubbs reached on a leadoff walk and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt, but two fly outs ended the chance.
A two out error hurt the Tigers in the eighth as Temple scratched across a run to make it 2-0. A leadoff single and walk put two runners on with no out, but Wallingford fielded a bunt and got the force out at third for the first out. A fly out to left put two outs on the board, but a grounder to second was misplayed allowing a run to score to make it 2-0.
Memphis was able to get one run back in the eighth, but left two more runners stranded to end the frame. The Tigers did the damage with two outs as Darien Tubbs reached on a fielder's choice, stole second and moved to third on the errant throw. Zach Willis drove in Darien Tubbs with a RBI single through the right side to make it 2-1, but the Tigers couldn't muster a two-out hit with runners on first and second.
The Owls responded in the ninth, pushing across a tally via a two-out single. Memphis was unable to put together a rally as Temple finished the game off with the 3-1 decision.
Wallingford (3-1) allowed three hits in his start and tied his career high with nine strikeouts. Offensively, Willis paced the Tigers going 2-for-4 with a RBI as the U of M out-hit Temple 6-5.
The Tigers will look to even the series on Saturday in game two of the series at 2:00 p.m. Saturday is "Pack the Park" and tickets are only $1. The first 250 fans will receive a FREE Memphis Tigers baseball.