May 11, 2011
OXFORD, Ohio - The University of Cincinnati baseball team allowed six runs in the seventh inning and fell to Miami University 10-4 on Wednesday evening at McKie Field at Hayden Park.
Cincinnati (26-22, 11-10 BIG EAST) went through four pitchers in the bottom of the seventh when Miami (28-21, 14-7 MAC) recorded six runs off five hits. After junior LHP Brad Mergen (Albany, Minn./Albany) struck out the leadoff batter, back-to-back singles put runners on first and second. Following a meeting at the mound with UC head coach Brian Cleary, Mergen stayed in the game and surrendered a two-RBI double down the right-field line to RedHawks shortstop Brad Gschwind, tying the game at 4-4.
Junior RHP Sam Slavik (Coldwater, Ohio/Coldwater) then entered the game in place of Mergen in the ensuing at-bat. He retired the first batter he faced to get to two outs in the seventh, but then walked the second batter before being replaced by LHP Jason Pascuzzi (Strongsville, Ohio/Strongsville). The redshirt freshman southpaw walked the first batter he faced to load the bases. The second batter, first baseman Kyle Weldon, knocked a first-pitch double to right field that scored two runs and gave the RedHawks a 6-4 lead.
Pascuzzi was then removed in favor of senior RHP Brian Sand (Cincinnati, Ohio/Oak Hills), who allowed a two-run double to left-center field to MU's Nate Bowles that put Cincinnati behind 8-4. Sand struck out the following batter to end the seventh.
Prior to the seventh, Mergen was enjoying his best start of the year after allowing just one earned run through six innings. He finished the game throwing 6.1 innings, allowing five runs (four earned) on eight hits and a career-best four strikeouts.
Trailing 2-0 in the fourth inning, sophomore center fielder Jake Proctor
(Cincinnati, Ohio/Oak Hills) ignited the UC offense after singling through the left side of the infield and stealing second base. Two batters later, senior right fielder Justin Riddell
(Lexington, Ky./Lexington Catholic) hit a two-run bomb to straightaway center field that tied the score 2-2. The longball was Riddell's eighth home run of the season and second in as many days.
With one out in the top of the sixth Proctor lined a stand-up double to left field, which led Miami to remove starting RHP Ryan Meyers. After freshman designated hitter Justin Glass (Fort Wayne, Ind./Carroll) walked to put runners on first and second, Riddell swatted a two-out Texas League single to right field that allowed Proctor to score his second run of the game and put the Bearcats in front 3-2.
In the seventh inning, junior left fielder Braden Kline (Warsaw, Ind./Warsaw Community) led off with a single to left field and reached second base on junior first baseman Nic Spence's (Victoria, Australia/St. Joseph's) fielder's choice groundball to the right side. Junior catcher Jake Saylor (Chandler, Ariz./Hamilton) then roped a one-out double to left-center field to score Kline and double UC's lead to 4-2.
Miami added two runs in the bottom of the eighth inning off UC's fourth reliever of the game, redshirt freshman Derek Cox (Mason, Ohio/Mason). He was replaced with one out in the eighth by redshirt junior LHP Joe Sullivan (Villa Hills, Ky./Holy Cross), who made his Bearcat debut by retiring the first two batters he faced to end the eighth.
Cincinnati will host Seton Hall University for a three-game BIG EAST Conference series beginning with a doubleheader on Saturday at Marge Schott Stadium. First pitch for Game 1 is scheduled at 1 p.m., with Game 2 slated to being approximately 30 minutes after the conclusion of Game 1.