Tigers Rebound Against Bulls; Take Third Game Of C-USA Series, 15-8
April 1, 2001
TAMPA - After trailing 6-4 entering the seventh inning, the University of Memphis Tiger baseball team (15-11, 3-6) staged a dramatic comeback to take the third game of a three-game conference series on Sunday afternoon against the Bulls of South Florida (15-16, 6-3) , 15-8.
Joshua Cartwright (2-1) got his second win of the year after going for four full while allowing only one earned off three hits and also struck out four.
The 10-run outburst by the Tigers in the seventh inning was the pivotal moment for Memphis's 15th win of the season which now ties their regular season total for all of last year. Memphis's seventh inning explosion is their highest single inning total of the season and fell only one run shy of tying the school record of 11 which came during the 1978 season against Delta State.
The Bulls took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the second when Allen Shirley singled through the right-side of the infield to score Mike Barclay from third who had stolen second base but advanced to third on a throwing error by Tiger catcher Barrett Smith. USF then added to their total in the third when MikeEylward doubled into the gap in right-center which scored Myron Leslie from second and gave the Bulls a 2-0 advantage. Memphis got a much-needed boost in the fourth when Josh Payne (Houston HS) took a 3-2 pitch and slapped a single into shallow rightfield, scoring Daniel Uggla for the Tigers first run of the game which made the score 2-1. The Bulls then jumped all over O'Malley in the fourth and scored three runs after hitting three consecutive singles to move ahead, 5-1. Then in the fifth, Rick Stegbauer slammed the first pitch of the inning over the wall in left and USF held a 6-1 lead. Memphis then answered the USF charge with two runs in the sixth which began after Smith singled to right, scoring Uggla from third (triple to left-center). Then Jay Fik (CBHS) doubled into right-center to score Smith from first and the Tigers had clawed their way back, 6-3.
In what proved to be a strange but yet effective seventh inning for Memphis, the U of M exploded for 10 runs off only five hits but USF committed three errors including one to start the inning which proved fatal for the Bulls. South Florida actually went through four pitchers in the inning including three during a two-out stretch with the bases loaded before Memphis went up big, 14-6.
Shannon Royal (2-3) picked up the loss for the Bulls after facing only one batter but still allowed the go-ahead run by Memphis.
Memphis will now travel to Oxford, MS. to tangle with SEC foe Ole Miss on Tuesday, April 3 at 7 p.m. Memphis won the previous game 3-1 which was played in front of 3, 000 fans at AutoZone Park in downtown Memphis.