Tigers Allow 13 Runs Late in 15-4 Loss to #7 Rice
March 24, 2012
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Knotted 2-2 after six innings, Memphis (9-13, 0-2) allowed 13 runs over the final three innings in a 15-4 loss to No. 7 Rice (18-7, 2-0) on Saturday at FedExPark.
Ryan Lewis was hit by a pitch with two outs in the second and he stole second to move into scoring position for the Owls. Langfield stranded Lewis on second as he struck out Michael Ratterree looking on a breaking ball to end the frame. Back-to-back singles helped Rice take a 1-0 lead in the third as J.T. Chargois recorded the RBI.
Langfield walked three in the fourth and a hit batter brought in the Owls second tally of the day. Rice appeared to be in position to increase its 2-0 lead, but Langfield forced an infield fly and fly out to right to get out of the inning.
After Carter White was stranded on second to end the third, the Tigers offense looked to have awakened, but Rice starter Jordan Stephens escaped the inning without allowing a run. Zach Willis worked a leadoff walk, but he was thrown out at third on a single by Adam McClain. Eli Hynes hit a groundout to second to move McClain to third, but he was stranded there as a foul out ended the stanza.
Memphis plated its first run of the series against Rice White laced a RBI double down the right field line. T.J. Rich started the inning with a single up the middle and scored from first on the double. White was thrown out at third trying to advance on the throw home and Rice took the 2-1 lead to the sixth.
The Tigers knotted the score in the sixth with the help of two out hits. McClain singled to left field to record his 13th multi-hit game on the year to start the two-out rally. Eli Hynes followed with a single up the middle and a Jacob Wilson RBI single tied the score. With runners on second and third, Rich hit two different pitches just foul on each side of the field, but he was retired on a check swing strike three call.
Rice regained the lead in the seventh as Memphis committed two errors in the inning. Michael Fuda singled and advanced to second on an errant throw to first with one out in the frame. Jeremy Rathjen followed with a single through the left side to put runners on the corners. Craig Manuel laid down a bunt, but Langfield barehanded and knabbed the runner from third at the plate.
With two outs in the inning, Shane Hoelscher singled up the middle, but the ball got away from the Tiger center fielder allowing both runners to score. Hoelscher advanced to third after the error and scored on a RBI single by Ryan Lewis to give the Owls a 5-2 lead.
Memphis answered with two runs in the eighth with the help of a clutch hit by McClain. White and Ford Wilson worked one out walks and Ethan Gross singled to drive in White and cut the deficit to 5-3. With two out and runners on the corners, McClain doubled down the left field line to put the potential tying run on third. J.T. Chargois got out of the jam with a grounder to second and the Owls took the 5-4 lead to the eighth.
The Tigers eighth inning struggles continued as the Owls pounded the Tigers for nine runs on eight hits in the frame to take a 14-4 lead. Rice had 14 batters hit in the inning and collected three doubles in the stanza. Rice tacked on a run on a sacrifice fly by Ratterree to set the final score at 15-4.
Langfield (4-2) was tagged with the loss and he finished with 6.2 innings pitched and he allowed four runs, three earned, on four hits. He walked six and struck out six. Chargois (1-1) picked up the win as he two-thirds of an inning and allowed no runs on one hit.
McClain led the Tiger offense with three hits and Jacob Wilson, Gross and White added two hits for Memphis, but Rice out-hit the Tigers 14-10 on the game.
The Tigers look to salvage a game in the series on Sunday in the series finale. First pitch is slated for 12:30 p.m. at FedExPark.