Baseball Holds off Late Rally to Sweep Memphis
May 9, 2004
HOUSTON - Matt Farrington went 2-for-5 with a run, double and three RBIs and then entered the game late to earn the save as the University of Houston baseball team claimed an 8-6 win over Memphis on Sunday in the finale of a Conference USA series at Cougar Field.
With the win, the Cougars earned their 32nd all-time C-USA sweep in 73 all-time series and moved into a tie for fourth place in the latest standings with TCU, which fell to UAB 10-2 Sunday.
UH (24-25, 15-9 C-USA) jumped out to a 6-1 lead after the first five innings and then held off a late Memphis comeback in the win. With the Cougars leading 8-5 entering the ninth, Memphis' Josh Payne single to lead off and moved to second after a walk to Chad House. Kurt Welch's RBI-single up the middle plated Payne and trimmed the Cougar lead to 8-6. After a fielder's choice put out one runner, Brent Dlugach walked to load the bases. However, Farrington forced Martin into a dribbler back to the mound to end the threat and the game.
Farrington provided a two-run double in a four-run, Cougar fifth inning to lead the UH offense, which pounded out 14 hits on the day, while Kevin Roberts went 3-for-4 with a run. Rob Johnson went 2-for-5 with an RBI, and Nick Bott batted 2-for-4 with his team-leading eighth home run of the season. Travis Tully also went 2-for-4 with a double and run and extended his UH season- and career-best hitting streak to 17 consecutive games.
UH starter Austin Sumerlin held Memphis to only one run off four hits with three strikeouts through the first five innings to collect the win and improve to 3-1. Memphis starter Bill Edwards dropped to 3-3 after giving up six runs off nine hits with two strikeouts and two walks in only four innings.
Farrington recorded his first career save after throwing the final 0.2 innings.
Ryan Martin went 3-for-5 with three doubles to lead Memphis, while Bill Moss batted 3-for-5 with a run.
The Cougars continue their 2004 season when they meet No. 3 Rice in Game Five of the annual Silver Glove Series at 7 p.m., Tuesday at Reckling Park. The game can be heard live on 88.3 KAXF FM or over the Internet at www.UHCougars.com with Nick Torina and Pat Cauley calling the action. Fans can follow live stats at www.UHCougars.com by clicking on the "Gametracker" link on the bottom of the main page.
For the first time all series, the Cougars grabbed the first lead. After Cole Bruce led off with a looping single into shallow center field, Rob Johnson blasted a double that rolled to the wall in left center. After Johnson was thrown out at third base, Bott smashed a solo home run over the left field wall for a 2-0 UH lead.
Memphis cut that deficit in half in the fifth inning on Kyle Scott's leadoff homer.
UH took control of the game in the bottom of the frame with four runs after six consecutive Cougars reached base safely. After Stuart Musslewhite was hit by a pitch and Kevin Roberts reached on an infield single, Tully loaded the bases with an infield bunt single.
However, that five-run cushion would not last long. In the sixth inning, Memphis struck for three runs off three hits with back-to-back doubles from Martin and Kyle Scott knocking in all three runs.
The Cougars pushed their lead to 8-4 in the seventh. After being hit by a pitch, pinch hitter Brett Logan moved to second on a wild pitch and scored on Musslewhite's RBI-single through the left side.
Memphis continued to chip away at the Cougar lead and scored a single run in the eighth on Martin's third double of the game before staging their ninth-inning rally.