Feb. 27, 2010
CLEARWATER, Fla. - Trailing 6-0 heading to the bottom of the ninth inning, the University of Cincinnati baseball team rallied for seven runs, including a walk-off, pinch-hit RBI single by senior Beach Brooks, to cap off a 7-6 come-from-behind win over Purdue University on Day 2 of the 2010 Big Ten/BIG EAST Baseball Challenge Saturday evening at Jack Russell Stadium.
The win improved Cincinnati to 2-3 on the season and gave the Bearcats their first win at the Big Ten/BIG EAST Baseball Challenge in five tries.
Over the first eight innings, UC was unable to put anything together and the Boilermakers scored three runs in the third inning, one run in the fifth, and two more in the seventh to take what looked to be a comfortable 6-0 lead.
Purdue’s starting pitcher Matt Morgan gave up just four hits to the Bearcats and struck out nine in seven innings of work, but was unable to earn the win as the Boilermaker’s bullpen walked four, hit a batter, and gave up seven runs in the final inning to spoil Morgan’s outing.
Senior Kevin Johnson and sophomore Braden Kline were both walked to start the ninth inning giving the Bearcats runners on first and second base with no outs. Following a strikeout, a throwing error by the Purdue shortstop as he tried to get a force out at second base allowed Johnson to score from second, moved Kline into second base, and put Scott on first. Scott and Kline moved up a base on a wild pitch, but Purdue filled the empty base when junior Chris Peters was hit by a pitch to load the bases.
Sophomore T.J. Jones captured UC’s first hit of the inning with a line-drive single to left field that scored two runs and cut the deficit in half, 6-3. A fly out put Cincinnati one out away from defeat, but the Bearcats continued to fight. With two outs, sophomore Kiley Jones was walked to re-load the bases, and another walk to sophomore Cory Hough brought plated a run while also putting the winning run on first base.
Following a Purdue pitching change, senior Brian Garman pinch-ran for Kiley Jones and senior Kevin Johnson wasted no time tying the game with a two-RBI single through the left side that plated both T.J. Jones and Garman, knotting the score at six.
With Hough on second and Johnson at first base, Brooks pinch-hit for Kline. After working a full count, which included a wild pitch that moved Hough to third base, Brooks fouled off five fastballs before depositing the 11th pitch of his at-bat into centerfield to score Hough and close out the 7-6 comeback win.
Seven UC players finished with a hit in the contest, with T.J. Jones and Johnson both driving in a team-best two runs. In addition to his 1-of-4 performance at the plate, Hough pitched the ninth inning for Cincinnati retiring three batters on six pitches, which ultimately gave him the win.
Cincinnati closes out the 2010 Big Ten/BIG EAST Baseball Challenge against No. 13 Ohio State at the Naimoli Complex at 1 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 28.