May 14, 2009
CHARLESTON, W. Va.- Tulane couldn't overcome two big innings from the Marshall Thundering Herd as the host team put up two four-run innings to open the contest to secure the win in game one of the Conference USA series. Tulane falls to 30-23 and 11-11 in C-USA action.
The Thundering Herd (22-28, 9-13 C-USA) put up a four-spot in the bottom of the first when Adam Yeager opened up the Marshall half of the inning with a base hit to right. Brandon Casamassima followed with a knock to center. Casamassima moved into scoring position on a wild pitch and with runners at second and third, Josh Valle walked but ball four was another wild pitch, allowing Yeager (3-6) to cross the plate for the first run of the series. Victor Gomez had runners at the corners and the sacrifice fly scored Casamassima, putting Marshall up 2-0. Tulane starter Jonathan Garrett (5-3) got the second out of the inning, retiring Nate Lape on a soft liner to Seth Henry at second but Rhett Stafford added to the runs column, taking Garrett deep to left field and extending the Herd's opening inning lead, 4-0 before the frame was through.
Marshall tacked on four more in the bottom of the second when Yeager picked up a one-out triple to right field. Casamassima drew the base on balls and stole second and it was again runners at second and third for Valle. Valle poked a double that scored Yeager and Casamassima and it was 6-0 when head coach Rick Jones called on lefty Matt Petiton out of the bullpen to face Gomez. Gomez welcomed Petiton by taking him deep and it was 8-0 after two full.
Petiton settled down in the following frames, throwing 4.1 innings on the afternoon. The lefty from Garden City, N.Y. fanned six while being charged with just two run during the outing.
Tulane kept Dan Straily (4-2) from the shutout victory when Steve Moritz opened the sixth with the ground ball to shortstop. Kenny Socorro threw the ball high and Moritz slid into first to avoid the tag to get things going for Tulane. Moritz took second on a wild pitch and advanced to third on a Jared Dyer (2-4) base hit through the left side. Moritz scored on the fielder's choice from Nick Boullosa and the Green Wave was on the board, 8-1 after five and a half.
The Herd got the run back in their half of sixth when Valle led off after wearing a pitch. Petiton went on to fan the next two Herd batsmen, with Nate Lape being Petiton's last strikeout victim, giving the Wave hurler six on the afternoon, tying his career high. Stafford picked up a base on balls and Jones made the switch to Mason Griffin out of the Tulane pen after Petiton worked a solid effort in relief.
The Green Wave tried to rally in the top of the eighth when Boullosa took a pitch in the numbers. He moved into scoring position on Josh Prince's bloop single and Scott Powell (3-5), loaded the bases when he poked one into center field. Honeck registered his 66th RBI on the sacrifice fly that scored Boullosa and it was 9-2 in favor of Marshall.
The Herd would go on to hold their lead to claim game one of the series, 9-2. The teams will get back at it Friday for game two, with first pitch slated for 1:05PM Central time.