April 7, 2013
By Eric DeSalvo
MEMPHIS, Tenn. (UCFAthletics.com) - In another high-scoring Sunday matinee in Conference USA, the UCF baseball team dropped the series finale to Memphis, 8-7, in a contest that featured three lead changes and 22 combined hits.
Senior infielder Chris Taladay did his best to keep Knights (18-15, 4-5) in the game all afternoon, notching his 15th multiple-hit performance with a 3-for-5 effort that included a season-high four RBI, all of which were of the two-out variety. First baseman James Vasquez also went 2-for-3 with an RBI, while walk-on infielder Brett Gordon notched his first-career RBI on a 2-for-4 afternoon.
With Sunday's loss, it marked the first series sweep of the Knights since April 1-3 against Southern Miss in Orlando, and first on the road since April 23-25 at Marshall.
The Knights will continue their eight-game road trip with a trek down I-4 to face in-state rival USF Wednesday night at 7 p.m. The season finale for the two squads can be heard on 740-AM The Game.
As it had in the first two weekend contests, UCF jumped out to an early lead with Sunday's coming in the third frame after three walks by Tigers' (18-13, 5-4) starter Alex Gunn led to a two-out, two-run single by Taladay, who laced the ball over the shortstop's head into left-center.
After Memphis got one back in the bottom-half of the frame, UCF was able to knock out Gunn in the fourth and took advantage of RHP Jon Reed as Gordon and JoMarcos Woods (1-for-6, 1 RBI) smacked back-to-back RBI singles through the infield to make it 4-1.
With the added run support, starter Eric Skoglund (1-3) settled in for his first 1-2-3 frame in the fourth, but it came undone for the Knights in the fifth as the Tigers scored five runs on five hits, while three pitchers were needed to get out of the frame.
Both teams would trade runs in the seventh prior to Taladay coming through in the clutch again, tying the game at 7-all with his second two-out, two-run single, this time up the middle past the diving glove of second baseman Zach Willis in the eighth.
After a lead-off walk and sacrifice bunt to start the bottom-half of the frame, LHP Brian Adkins (1-5) saw Willis groove an 0-1 pitch to right center that scored the eventual game-winning run.
UCF would not go down quietly, putting runners at second and third with one out. Reliever Heith Hatfield would buckle down and register a strikeout swinging and grounder to shortstop to close out the game.
Ten Voucher packages are now on sale for only $50. Select the games that you want to attend for a discounted price. Voucher packages and single-game tickets can be purchased by calling 407-UCF-1000 or visit the baseball tickets page. Stay up-to-date on all the latest news by visiting UCFAthletics.com and following the team on Twitter (@UCF_Baseball) and Facebook.