March 10, 2007
CORPUS CHRISTI, Tex. -- Freshman pitcher Ryan Berry scattered four hits and fired a career-high 11 strikeouts in seven innings of work to lead the eighth-ranked Rice baseball team to a 5-1 victory over longtime rival Texas Tech before a crowd of 5,922 on the second day of the Whataburger College Classic Saturday night in Corpus Christi, Texas.
Berry was outstanding in remaining undefeated with a 3-0 record. The freshman from Humble, Tex., allowed four singles and two walks in the second-longest outing of his collegiate career. The one run he allowed was unearned and the 11 Ks in the most by an Owl pitcher this season. His previous season high in strikeouts was eight, recorded in his last decision over 25th-ranked Long Beach State on Feb. 17. Berry was relieved by junior left-hander Bobby Bramhall, who worked the final two scoreless frames allowing one hit with two strikeouts. Bramhall earned his second save of the season.
Texas Tech started the scoring with a run in the top of the third inning. Second baseman Joey Kenworthy was hit by a pitch with one out and he advanced two bases on one play. Chris Hall singled and a Rice fielding error allowed him to take third. Doug Thennis sacrificed him home with a bunt to the right side for a 1-0 margin.
Rice answered with two runs in the bottom of the fourth. Junior Joe Savery drew a leadoff walk and junior Jordan Dodson followed with a home run to centerfield. Dodson's third round-tripper of the season landed in the bullpen just to the left of the center-screen 400 feet away.
The Owls added runs in both the fifth, sixth and eighth. In the fifth Chad Lembeck singled with one away and Aaron Luna drew a walk. Savery reached on a Red Raider fielding error that loaded the bases. Dodson was hit by a Tech pitch that forced Lembeck home and extended the margin to 3-1. In the sixth, starting third baseman Jimmy Comerota doubled into the right field corner and he scored on Lembeck's RBI single to left. In the eighth the Blue and Gray added one final insurance run on a hit and Tech fielding error.
Rice improved to 13-7 on the season. Texas Tech fell to 14-7. The Owls extended a streak of consecutive victories over Texas Tech to 11 wins in a row dating back to April of 1996. The round-robin tournament concludes Sunday. Rice meets host Texas A&M-Corpus Christi the weekend's final game at 4 pm.
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