UCF Falls to Marshall After Leading 5-3 in the Eighth


April 24, 2010

Final Stats

UCF at Marshall
April 24, 2010
From Charleston, W. Va.
Team R H E
UCF 5 9 0
Marshall 6 14 1

WP: Ryan Kiel (2-1), 2.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 1 K
LP: Joe Rogers (3-1), 2.1 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 0 K
SV: None

Game-Changing Moment
The bottom of the ninth. Started up by a weak roller for an infield single by Kirby Pellant, Marshall used a sac bunt and a double to tie it up at 5-5, then notched the win when Victor Gomez's ground ball caromed off Joe Rogers' leg and into a gap between third and short to score Kurt Lipton.

Three Stars
First Star: MAR LF Kurt Lipton, 3-for-5, 3 RBI, GW R
Second Star: MAR C Victor Gomez, 2-for-4, GW RBI
Third Star: UCF RF Shane Brown, 1-for-2, 3 BB, 3rd HR of the series

By Brian Ormiston

Charleston, W. Va. (UCFAthletics.com) - UCF scored three in the seventh to lead 5-3, but Marshall stormed back with one in the eighth and two in the ninth to defeat the Knights, 6-5, Saturday in Charleston, W. Va. The loss dropped UCF's record to 26-16 on the year and 6-8 in Conference USA.

Senior Shane Brown crushed another homer vs. the Thundering Herd (19-20, 8-6) Saturday, giving him three so far on the weekend. It also was his eighth of the year and 23rd of his career. The first three runs UCF scored in the series vs. Marshall were all on solo home runs by Brown.

The Knights had plenty of opportunities to put more on the board, but left 12 men on base Saturday.

After the Knights stranded a runner at second in the first inning, Marshall left a pair on in its half against UCF starting lefty Johnny Sedlock. The visitors tried again in the second when Chris Duffy led off with a single and touched second on a sac bunt from Ronnie Richardson. A one-out walk to Chris Taladay put two aboard, but southpaw Mike Mason was able to keep the game scoreless.

UCF again had a runner at second with one out in the third and could not capitalize, which hurt when the Herd recorded a clutch hit with two in scoring position for a 2-0 lead. Brown did cut the deficit in half on his solo blast which not only cleared the wall but also the fence surrounding the stadium in the fifth. The Knights then got the tying run to second with one down thanks to a double from Beau Taylor, and still could not convert.

The drought finally ended in the sixth, though. After going 0-for-18 with runners in scoring position to start the series, Jonathan Griffin's infield single with Richardson at third and one out finally broke the trend. It also tied the game at 2-2. Now representing the go-ahead run, Griffin did reach second in the inning only to be left hanging there.

With Sedlock still on the hill for the Knights, Marshall put runners at scoring position with one away in the bottom of the sixth before the call to the pen was made. Cory Weech entered and the only run allowed was on a sac fly.

Now trailing 3-2, UCF needed to keep chugging offensively and it certainly did so in the seventh. Free passes to Taylor and Ryan Breen started it up, and Duffy dropped a single into center to load them up. And on one swing of the bat, the Knights finally had the lead. On a 1-1 offering, Richardson ripped a two-run double into left-center, and he would later score the third run of the frame by way of a two-bagger off the bat of Griffin. While they did notch the clutch hits to jump ahead of the Herd, the Knights left runners at second and third with one out to keep the game close.

Ahead by two runs, closer Joe Rogers was called in for a possible three-inning save. He cruised through the seventh until Marshall picked up a run in the eighth. The Thundering Herd appeared as though it would continue to light up the scoreboard in the inning, however Rogers forced Ben Jurevicius to hit into a 4-6-3 inning-ending double play with two runners on base to keep the Knights on top.

UCF would go 1-2-3 in the top of the ninth, setting up the Marshall walk-off victory. A slow roller by Kirby Pellant found a perfect gap on the UCF infield to put the leadoff man aboard. And following a sac bunt, he scored the tying run on a double from Kurt Lipton. He then became the winning run when Victor Gomez sent a groundball off the leg of Rogers, which caromed by Taladay at third and Darnell Sweeney at short to give Lipton enough time to round third and score.

The series finale with the Thundering Herd is set for Sunday at 1 p.m.

Ticket plans for the 2010 campaign are currently on sale. To purchase tickets, call 407-823-1000 or visit UCFAthletics.com. And for the latest news on the Knights, log on to UCFAthletics.com - the official site for UCF varsity sports. The site, which also contains Golden Knights Club donor information, is also the home of UCF's new online apparel store. Also visit UCFPhotos.com and become a follower of the Knights on Twitter and Facebook.

Game Notes
UCF - 26-16 Overall, 6-8 Conference USA
Marshall - 19-20 Overall, 8-6 Conference USA
-UCF's lineup card featured three players hitting in brand new spots Saturday. Ronnie Richardson batted No. 6, Jonathan Griffin served as the No. 8 hitter and Austin Johnston took over the No. 9 hole.
-The Knights' offense drew nine walks and struck out just three times.
-Sophomore catcher Beau Taylor stole his first base of his career Saturday.
-Defensively, UCF turned two more double plays, giving it 46 on the season.