April 23, 2011
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The UAB Blazers claimed a 7-2 win in game one, and then rallied for an 8-7 win in 12 innings in the second game of a Conference USA double-header Saturday at J.D. Young Memorial Field in Birmingham, Alabama.
Rice dropped to 28-16 overall and 9-6 in C-USA league play. UAB improved to 23-17 on the season and 8-7 in conference.
After a 9-5 win in the series-opener on Friday night, Rice dropped game one of the twinbill but looked to be in high-gear to take game two and win the weekend series.
The Owls exploded for four runs in the top of the first inning and went on to build a 7-2 lead heading into the fourth. Keenan Cook stroked a leadoff triple to center field and J.T. Chargois reached on a UAB fielding error. Anthony Rendon and Michael Ratterree followed with back-to-back doubles for a quick 3-0 advantage. Shane Hoelscher singled and Ratterree scored from third on Ryan Lewis' sacrifice fly that made it 4-0.
The Owls issued UAB a pair of runners to start the bottom of the third with a hit batsman and a walk. Both advanced a station on a wild pitch and a single by John Frost scored men to make it 4-2.
Rice came right back with three runs in the top of the fourth. The Blue & Gray strung together five singles in the inning that extended the margin to 7-2.
In the fourth Ivan DeJesus hit a one-out triple and scored on a base hit by Kevin DePew. Two Owl errors in the fifth opened the door to a big four-run frame that tied the game. Rice could have worked its way out of the inning, but UAB stayed alive long enough until DePew could deliver a bases-loaded double that tied the game 7-7.
The teams traded scoreless frames for six more innings. In the bottom of the 12th, Coy Arrowood singled and the Blazers proceeded to load the bases on a Rice error and walk. Keith DePew singled home the game-winning run to complete the double-header sweep.
The Owls dropped the first game of the afternoon 7-2. In the contest Owl junior designated hitter Anthony Rendon slugged his fourth home run of the season in his last at bat of the afternoon. The round-tripper was the 50th of his collegiate career.
UAB was the first to score in the bottom of the fifth. The Blazers strung together a walk with four singles. The biggest hit was a John Frost's single that scored two in a four-run frame.
UAB stretched the margin to 7-1 with three unearned runs in the eighth after an Owl fielding error. Rice's final score was the solo shot by Rendon in a 7-2 final.
The Owls have wrapped-up the weekend road swing and will get a break from action next week while the University is in its final exams period. The Blue & Gray return to action on May 4 (Wed.) with a home game against Southland Conference power Stephen F. Austin. Start time is set for 6:30 pm at Reckling Park.