Nelson Homers, Simon Pitches Bearcats Past Vikings|
March 10, 2006
CINCINNATI, Ohio---Glen Simon pitched seven shutout innings and Cincinnati's bats recorded eight extra-base hits, leading the Bearcats to an 8-1 win over Cleveland State on Friday at the UC Baseball Stadium. The victory, UC's eighth in its last 10 games, ups the squad's record to 8-6 on the year.
Jack Nelson was one of many offensive heroes for the Bearcats as he hit a pair of home runs, marking the second multiple homer day of his career. Josh Harrison added a pair of doubles, while Logan Parker doubled and tripled to lead the offensive brigade. LaFringe Hayes and Mark Muscenti also added triples in the victory.
Simon, now 3-1 on the year, was once again nearly unhittable as he kept the Vikings guessing for his entire outing. The junior struck out only two, but didn't walk a batter and allowed just two hits before turning the game over to the UC bullpen. Simon has now pitched 14 straight scoreless innings, spanning his last two starts.
"I thought Glen (Simon) did another fantastic job on the mound and really kept us in the game," said Bearcat head coach Brian Cleary. "Jack (Nelson) also gave us a really great performance at the plate. I was pleased that our hitters kept focused at the plate and I thought we played really hard right from the start."
The day was not without a setback for UC as junior catcher Nick Maragas left in the third inning with an injury. The Bearcats were forced to turn to Harrison for the freshman's first collegiate action behind the plate in Maragas' absence.
The Bearcats' offensive explosion started in the third inning as the team batted around, putting five runs on the board. Hayes ripped a triple inside the right field line for the first of five straight extra-base hits to start the inning. Harrison then pulled a double down the third base line to score Hayes for the day's first run. Following Harrison, Parker ripped a triple over centerfielder Vasili Pahoulis' head to score Harrison, setting the stage for Nelson's first long ball of the day, a two-run shot to right. Muscenti followed with a triple to center, before scoring on Brian Szarmach's RBI groundout.
On the mound, Simon was in complete control, as after a two-out, third inning single by Pahoulis, he retired eight straight and 13 of the last 14 he faced. He gave way to Matt Heber and Bryan Wood, with the latter allowing a ninth inning RBI single by Steve Chinn as the only blemish.
The Bearcats weren't done scoring after the five-run third as Nelson led the fifth inning off with his second homer in as many at-bats. Muscenti was then hit by a pitch by reliever Brian Long and he went to second on a wild pitch. Two outs later, Adam Yeager reached on an infield single and a hard charging Muscenti was able to score all the way from second to make it 7-0. UC rounded out the scoring in the sixth on back-to-back doubles by Harrison and Parker.
CSU starter Stephen Procner took the loss for the Vikings who fall to 1-4 on the year. The sophomore was touched for six runs on eight hits in four-plus innings of work.
The two teams are scheduled to contest game two of the series on Saturday with a 4 p.m. first pitch. Freshman Steve Blevins will take the mound for UC, while CSU will counter with either Jeremy Hartman or Pat McKitrick.