Wednesday, February 21, 2018
Colleges

USF downs Rutgers in Big East tourney opener

CLEARWATER — The day after he was named Big East rookie of the year, USF freshman Jimmy Herget pitched into the eighth inning, leading the Bulls to a 5-2 win against Rutgers in the opening round of the conference baseball tournament at Bright House Field.

The game started at 10:23 Wednesday night due to a rain delay earlier in the day and ended after 1 a.m.

On a day where the top two seeds lost their opening games in the double-elimination tournament, the fourth-seeded Bulls advanced to play eighth-seeded Connecticut at 8 tonight for a spot in Saturday's semifinals. USF swept UConn on the road in the regular season, winning two one-run games and another in the 15th inning.

Rutgers plays in an elimination game today against top seed Louisville at 5. Third-seeded Pittsburgh and seventh-seeded Notre Dame also won in Wednesday's opening-round games.

Rutgers had four hits in the first three innings against USF, but Herget was able to get out of trouble and trailed just 1-0 on Brian O'Grady's sacrifice fly in the second. USF tied the game in the fourth, when Jimmy Falla reached base on a 12-pitch walk, advanced on a wild pitch and scored on Chris Norton's double.

USF rallied for three runs and the lead in the fifth, with all three coming with two outs. Freshman Levi Borders doubled to left-center but was held up at third on Nik Alfonso's second single of the game. With two outs, the Bulls got three straight RBI singles from Alex Mendez, James Ramsay and Falla, good for a 4-1 lead. The throw home from leftfield was ahead of Mendez, but the ball came loose on the tag, allowing the run to score.

Ramsay came through with another two-out single in the seventh, scoring Alfonso, who reached on his third single and took second on a sacrifice bunt by Kyle Teaf.

Rutgers threatened in the eighth after USF loaded the bases with three walks, but reliever Lawrence Pardo got O'Grady to pop out foul to catcher.

Rutgers had the bases loaded in the ninth and scored on a fielder's choice, but Chad Taylor got two infield popups with the tying run at the plate to end the game.

"The other guys didn't pitch great, but they did enough to get out of innings," USF coach Lelo Prado said. "It's USF baseball this year. They're trying to kill me, and they're doing a great job of doing it. It's USF baseball. Now let's get back and get a good night's sleep."

UConn 3, Louisville 2 (12): The top-seeded Cardinals saw their 16-game win streak snapped in 12 innings to the eighth-seeded Huskies.

The Cardinals, who swept the three-game regular-season series against the Huskies by a combined score of 17-1, were shut out for 11 innings after leading 2-1 in the first.

UConn scored with two outs in the 12th when centerfielder Billy Ferriter's fourth hit of the night brought in leftfielder Eric Yavarone. Yavarone led off the inning with an infield single and advanced on a sacrifice bunt.

Three Huskies pitchers shut down a Cardinals lineup that was hitting .296 this season. Starter Carson Cross retired 16 straight at one point. David Mahoney retired all seven batters he faced to earn the win, and Pat Butler got the final two outs for the save.

"All week long, we preached that all you had to do was make (the tournament). You need a chance," Ferriter said. "We came on strong with the bats."

Louisville plays the loser of Wednesday's late game between USF and Rutgers at 5 today in the double-elimination tournament. UConn faces the winner of the game at 8 for a spot in Saturday's semifinals.

No. 7 NOTRE DAME 5, No. 2 SETON HALL 0: Notre Dame senior Adam Norton threw a complete-game, beating the Pirates for a third time in less than a year.

Norton helped the Irish eliminate Seton Hall in last year's tournament, and he started a 3-2 Notre Dame win in March. Starter Jon Prosinski kept the Pirates close Wednesday, but Notre Dame got a key hit in the sixth inning, a two-run home run by designated hitter Blaise Lezynski.

Seton Hall came in winners of 15 of 16, but now its place on the NCAA tournament bubble could be in question if it loses today's 10 a.m. elimination game against St. John's.

No. 3 PITT 10, No. 6 ST. JOHN'S 2: The Panthers pulled away after a 70-minute rain delay in the fifth inning, turning a 4-2 game into an easy win behind Ethan Mildren's pitching.

Mildren, who threw 75 pitches before the delay, pitched four innings of no-hit scoreless baseball after the rain. The Panthers added three runs in the fifth and three more in the eighth, advancing to play Notre Dame at 1 p.m. today for a spot in semifinals.

Pittsburgh came in with a four-game losing streak, having been swept by Louisville last weekend to fall out of a first-place tie. Coach Joe Jordano cited the Red Storm's clutch hitting with runners in scoring position, starting with a four-run second.

Greg Auman can be reached at [email protected]

Comments
Louisville must vacate 2013 basketball title, NCAA denies appeal

Louisville must vacate 2013 basketball title, NCAA denies appeal

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Louisville must vacate its 2013 men’s basketball title following an NCAA appeals panel’s decision to uphold sanctions against the men’s program in the sex scandal case. The Cardinals will have to vacate 123 victories including the c...
Published: 02/20/18
Center Molly Franson’s value to UT is easily quantifiable

Center Molly Franson’s value to UT is easily quantifiable

TAMPA — Coaches often point to "intangibles" — the subtle positive qualities that usually don’t show up in the boxscore — when praising their key players.But University of Tampa women’s basketball coach Tom Jessee has a different definition when desc...
Published: 02/13/18
FSU holds off rally in hard-fought win over Louisville

FSU holds off rally in hard-fought win over Louisville

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Terance Mann couldn’t mope over two missed free throws that could have sealed Florida State’s victory. There was still work to do on the other end to make sure Louisville didn’t take advantage. The junior guard quickly redeemed hims...
Updated one month ago
No. 23 Florida clobbered at home by Alabama

No. 23 Florida clobbered at home by Alabama

GAINESVILLE — Mike White hung his head.Florida’s coach scuffed his shoes against the hardwood, screamed into his hands and watched as his team let Saturday’s game slip away.With Alabama on a seven-point run 11 minutes into the second half, the Gators...
Updated one month ago

USF Bulls fall to Memphis

TAMPA — From its two-point home loss against UCF to its victory at Tulane, USF recently had provided its fan base encouragement in spurts. Similarly, its interior defense against Memphis on Wednesday night also came and went.With 6-foot-3 Tigers guar...
Updated one month ago
Florida’s shooting goes cold in road loss to Georgia

Florida’s shooting goes cold in road loss to Georgia

ATHENS, Ga. — The repeated misses were bad for No. 23 Florida. The failure to rebound them made the offensive struggles even more painful. Yante Maten scored 20 and Georgia recovered after blowing a halftime lead to beat the Gators 72-60 on Tuesday n...
Updated one month ago

Florida State beats Miami in OT despite 17 Hurricanes 3-pointers

TALLAHASSEE — Florida State’s Leonard Hamilton and Miami’s Jim Larranaga both have at least 33 years of college basketball coaching experience under their belts.Both might have experienced a first during their matchup Saturday.FSU and Miami needed a ...
Updated one month ago
Chris Chiozza scores 20 as No. 20 Florida routs Baylor

Chris Chiozza scores 20 as No. 20 Florida routs Baylor

GAINESVILLE — Florida point guard Chris Chiozza was feeling it, so he went with the flow.A pass-first point guard by nature, Chiozza decided to stay aggressive as a scorer and see what happened.The Gators were glad he did.Chiozza finished the 20th-ra...
Updated one month ago
Pro Bowl to honor UCF for undefeated season

Pro Bowl to honor UCF for undefeated season

ORLANDO — The NFL plans to recognize UCF’s 13-0 season during today’s Pro Bowl at Camping World Stadium.Players have been invited to walk out on the field for a celebration after the first quarter."When we thought about UCF and the amazing season the...
Updated one month ago
Michigan State athletic director retires in wake of scathing ESPN report

Michigan State athletic director retires in wake of scathing ESPN report

EAST LANSING, Mich. — Michigan State athletic director Mark Hollis announced his retirement Friday, the day an explosive ESPN story detailing a number of allegations of sexual assault and violent attacks on women occurred with Spartan athletes.Hollis...
Updated one month ago