March 4, 2006
METAIRIE, La. - Junior reliever Daniel Latham tossed 2.1 scoreless innings and the Green Wave plated four runs over its final three innings as the Tulane University baseball team rallied to defeat Manhattan College, 5-3, Saturday afternoon at Zephyr Field.
Trailing 3-1 after five and a half innings, the Green Wave got single runs in the sixth and seventh to tie the game before sophomore middle infielders Cat Everett and Brad Emaus ripped back-to-back RBI singles in the eighth to complete the comeback. Latham (1-1), meanwhile, faced just one more than the minimum during his time toeing the rubber, striking out three and allowing just one single to earn the win.
"It was another challenging day for us," Tulane head coach Rick Jones said. "It's hard to come by runs right now, but the good news is we really pitched well and played well defensively again. We kept ourselves close and finally got a couple of big hits."
With the win, Tulane improves to 9-4 on the year. Manhattan, meanwhile, falls to 1-1. The two teams will play the rubber match of the series on Sunday with first pitch slated for 1 p.m. For ticket information, contact the Tulane Athletics Ticket Office at 504-247-1240. The ticket office at Zephyr Field is located on the third base side, and opens two hours before every game for all Tulane home games. Tickets can also be purchased on-line at www.TulaneGreenWave.com.
As a staff, the Jaspers threw 165 pitches, but only 71 were strikes, and only the third man out of the bullpen - Matt Nevin - had more strikes than balls (31-21). Tulane used Manhattan's wildness to draw a season-high 10 walks, including leadoff walks in five of the eight innings the Green Wave drew an at-bat. Tulane also had a hit batsman, and of the 11 free passes, four came around to score.
The advantage did not last long, however, as centerfielder Eric Nieto and left fielder Mike Garcia opened the third with back-to-back singles, and following a wild pitch by Tulane starter Billy Mohl, the pair scored on a two-out RBI single by catcher Nick Derba to give the Jaspers a 2-1 advantage.
Manhattan padded its lead two innings later when first baseman Matt Rizzotti ripped a one-out triple to left center, and scored on a two-out base hit by Derba to make it 3-1.
Tulane cut the lead to one on a two-out pinch-hit RBI single by rookie Anthony Scelfo in the sixth, and tied the ballgame in the seventh without the benefit of a base hit as Emaus walked to lead off the frame, advanced the bases on a steal and passed ball, and scored on a fielder's choice ball off the bat of senior left fielder Matt Riser.
After Latham retired the side in order in the top of the eighth, reserve catcher Ty Wallace sparked a two-run frame by getting hit by a Nevins offering with one out, and Southard followed with a single to shallow center. Wallace was lifted at second in favor of freshman pinch runner Seth Henry, and the speedy rookie was able to score from 180 feet away when Everett laced an RBI single through the right side of the infield in the ensuing at bat.
One hitter later, Emaus provided the Green Wave with a little breathing room with a base hit through the left side of the infield to score Southard from third to account for the final score.
The Jaspers had a chance in the ninth as Nieto laced a one-out single to left central, but Latham got Garcia to foul out to first base and Rizzotti to fly out to center to seal the Tulane win.
"We fell behind in the count a lot, and when you do that, you've got to give them something to hit later in the at-bat," Manhattan head coach Kevin Leighton said. "And when you give this team something they can handle, they're going to handle it."
Following Sunday's series finale vs. Manhattan, the Green Wave return to action on Tuesday, March 8, when they travel to Baton Rouge to take on arch-rival LSU at 6:30 p.m. at Alex Box Stadium. The game will be broadcast live on the flagship station of Tulane baseball, WRBH 88.3 fm, and will also be televised live on Cox Sports Network. In addition, live stats will once again be provided free of charge on the internet via GameTracker at www.TulaneGreenWave.com.