Baseball Drops Seventh Straight in 8-4 Decision at Middle Tennessee
May 12, 2004
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - The University of Memphis baseball team dropped its seventh consecutive game in an 8-4 decision Wednesday night at Middle Tennessee's Reese Smith Field. Chad House went 1-for-4 on the night to extend his career-long hitting streak to 11 games. Memphis falls to 22-25.
House extended his career-long hitting streak with a leadoff single in the first. After Bill Moss reached on a throwing error by shortstop Jeff Beachum, Brent Dlugach successfully advanced House to third and Moss to second with a sacrifice bunt. Kurt Welch's double off the wall in left centerfield scored House and Moss for a 2-0 Memphis lead. MT starter Chris Mobley was able to work out of a jam, inducing Adam Amar into a 4-6-3 double play to end the inning.
Middle Tennessee (34-17) sent seven batters to the plate before Memphis was able to record an out. Tiger starter Michael Novarese struggled early, walking three of the first four Blue Raider hitters. Novarese walked in the first Raider run and RBI singles by Nate Jaggers and Shane Kemp gave MT a 3-2 lead. Middle tacked on a fourth run in the first when Marcus Taylor drew a bases loaded walk. Novarese then got Middle catcher, Michael McKenry to hit into a 5-4-3 twin-killing to end the threat.
The Tigers cut the deficit to 4-3 when Jordan Hart laced a single through the left side to score Josh Payne who reached on an error by Beachum. Mobley again managed to work out a jam with runners on second and third by fanning Moss and Dlugach to end the inning. Moss knotted the contest at 4-4 with a towering blast just inside the leftfield foul pole. The homer was Moss' second on the year.
Novarese held MT hitless three and two-thirds innings before first baseman Derek Phillips blasted his second homer in as many games to put the Blue Raiders ahead, 5-4 in the fifth-inning. Third baseman Brett Carroll's three-run blast to left center in the home half of the seventh gave MT a commanding 8-4 lead.
Andrew Christie came in relief of Novarese to strike out the only batter he faced, Phillips, in the bottom of the seventh. Novarese (1-2) fired sixth and one-thirds innings, giving up seven runs on seven hits in a losing effort. Payne worked a scoreless eighth inning for the Tigers. Reliever Danny Bourne picked up the win in two and two-thirds scoreless innings to improve to 2-0 for MT.
Moss, Welch, Michael Lewis and Hart each had two hits in the game for Memphis. The Tigers out-hit the Blue Raiders 11-8, but could not produce the clutch hit in stranding nine runners on the night.
Memphis returns to the Nat to begin the final homestand of the year with a Conference USA series with Cincinnati this weekend. First pitch for Friday night's series opener is set for 7 p.m.