April 21, 2012
NEW ORLEANS - Things looked bleak after UCF took a 7-2 lead into the bottom of the eighth inning, but the Tulane baseball team stormed back to knot the score at seven runs apiece before the Knights tallied a run in the top of the 12th inning to claim the 8-7 victory in the second game of a three game series inside Greer Field at Turchin Stadium on Saturday (April 21). Tucker Oakley delivered a three-RBI double in the eight and Garrett Cannizaro delivered the game tying two-run home run with two outs in the ninth inning, but the Knights plated a 12th inning run to claim the victory.
"I thought we did a good job of coming back (late in the game)," said Tulane head coach Rick Jones. "We hit four line drives in the eleventh and twelfth (innings) that were right at (their fielders) which is frustrating. We had a couple of base running errors that cost us and we didn't play as well as we have been defensively and that was costly. When you are playing a really good club you can't do those things and expect for them to not come back and bite you and it did. It was a disappointing loss and we are running out of time if we don't find a way to win some of these games."
The two teams exchanged two runs innings in the early going of the game, with UCF (33-8, 11-3 C-USA) taking a 2-0 lead in the second inning and the Green Wave grabbing a pair of runs in the third to tie the contest. Alex Friedrich and JoMarcos Woods each posted RBI doubles to open the scoring against Tulane (26-13, 5-6 C-USA) starting pitcher David Napoli. Bowen Woodson's double down the left field line plated Brennan Middleton from first after he led off the inning with a single. Woodson advanced to third base on the throw to home plate and came in to score a batter later when Brandon Boudreaux grounded out to second base.
Napoli threw five and one-thirds innings and allowed four runs on six hits - three extra base hits - and walked two. The left-hander struck out a pair of batters in the no decision, while Massey faced three batters, allowing two runs on three hits, and failed to record an out.
Tyler Mapes entered the game with UCF leading 6-2 and limited the Knights to just one unearned run over the next five and two-thirds innings. With the lead sitting still at 7-2 entering the eighth, the Green Wave began their comeback at the plate.
In the eighth, the offense went to work with two outs and Nick Schneeberger on first base, after he singled with one out in the frame. UCF reliever Garrett Nuss walked Jeremy Schaffer and Blake Crohan to load the bases before Jimmy Reed entered for the Knights and promptly surrendered a bases clearing double to pinch hitter Tucker Oakley to make it a 7-5 game in favor of the visitors.
Then, in the ninth inning, the Knights closer Joe Rodgers walked Boudreaux with two outs in the inning and Cannizaro followed with a two-run home run - his fourth of the season - into the net down the left field line to tie the game at seven.
Mapes continued to throw well into extra innings as he coaxed a double play ball to get out of the tenth inning and retired the side in order in the eleventh inning. The twelfth, however, was started with a double by D.J. Hicks, who moved to third on a ground out a batter later. Friedrich then collected his fourth hit of the afternoon to drive in Hicks and push the Knights back in front.
That was the final batter for Mapes (1-2) who tossed six innings and allowed two runs - one earned - on five hits. The junior walked two - one intentionally - and struck out four in the longest outing of his Tulane career. Alex Facundus came on and retired two of the final three batters, walking one, but the Olive and Blue were unable to string together enough hits versus UCF's fifth reliever of the game, Brian Adkins, in the bottom half of the inning to drop their second straight one-run decision by a score of 8-7.
On the day, Cannizaro, Middleton, Schneeberger and Bowen Woodson all chipped in two hits, while Cannizaro and Oakley each posted multi-RBI efforts. Potkay's base hit in the 12th inning moved his reached base streak to a team-best 18 games, while three other players extended double-digit streaks of their own.
The two teams will conclude the three game series on Sunday, April 21 at 1:00 on the Turf at Turchin.
- The all-time series is tied at 13-13.
- Saturday's game was the second extra inning game of the season for Tulane (Indiana, 2/25 - 12 Innings)
- Four different Tulane players posted multiple hits on Saturday, marking the 18th time this season that four or more Tulane players have reached the multi-hit plateau in the same game.
- Jeremy Schaffer has reached base safely in 12 straight games, going one-for-five with a walk.
- Sean Potkay's 12th inning single moved his hitting streak to eight games and his reached base streak to 18 games.
- Garrett Cannizaro pushed his hitting streak to eight games with a two-for-six day at the plate.
- Brandon Boudreaux (13 games) and Brennan Middleton (16 games) each extended their reached base streaks on Saturday.
- Tucker Oakley posted his third career multi-RBI game on Saturday versus UCF.
- Tyler Mapes threw a career-high six innings on Saturday versus UCF.
- It was just the second time in the month of April that Tulane allowed six or more runs.