Tiger Baseball Falls To Middle Tennessee 8-5
April 28, 2004
Memphis, Tenn. - The University of Memphis baseball team dropped an 8-5 decision to Middle Tennessee as the Tigers could not overcome a 17-hit attack by the Blue Raiders at Nat Buring Stadium Wednesday.
Leadoff hitter Eric McNamee led the Blue Raider charge with four hits and first baseman Derek Phillips and third baseman Brett Carroll each added three hits as Middle Tennessee (27-16) earned a split in the two-game set with the Tigers (21-17).
The visitors grabbed a quick 2-0 lead in the first when Phillips belted a two-run homer to right-center off Memphis starter Michael Novareses. The Tigers cut the lead in half in the bottom of the first when House sent the first pitch Blue Raider starter Shay Horseman threw over the leftfield wall.
A two-run single by Lewis in the second scored Ryan Martin and Kyle Scott as the Tigers took a 3-2 lead. Horseman (1-2) allowed just one more run over the next three innings to pick up his first win of the season.
The Blue Raiders strung together four straight hits and a walk to open the third, but could only plate one run to tie the game at three. Carroll doubled in a run, but Eric McNamee was erased after being caught stealing and Shane Kemp grounded into a double to play to end the threat.
House tripled in the fifth and scored on a sacrifice fly by Bill Moss to give Memphis a 4-3 lead. However, it was short-lived as Middle took advantage of five hits and three Tiger errors to score four runs in the sixth off Memphis reliever Corey Kines (1-1).
Carroll singled and scored on a two-run homer by Nate Jaggers. The Blue Raiders then added two more runs on a RBI-single by Michael McKenry and an error by House in leftfield. Blue Raider reliever Danny Borne came on to pitch for Horseman in the sixth and held the Tigers scoreless over the next three innings.
The Blue Raiders tacked on a run in the ninth off reliever Bill Edwards when McNamee singled and moved over to third on a sac bunt and a wild pitch before scoring on a Phillips' RBI-single. Kyle Scott launched a solo home run in the ninth off Middle reliever Steve Klein, but that would be as close as the Tigers would get. Eric Blevins replaced Klein and retired the next two Tigers to end the game.
The Tigers host Tulane in a Conference USA series this weekend. Friday night's game is at Nat Buring Stadium with first pitch set for 7 p.m. On Saturday, the Tigers and Green Wave will play at AutoZone Park following the completion of the Memphis Redbirds' game with Oklahoma City that starts at 1:05 p.m. The teams return to Nat Buring on Sunday to conclude the series at 1 p.m.