Baseball opens season with rough start

USF (1-2) fell in two of its three opening games of the season this weekend at the Big East-Big Ten challenge held in Clearwater and Dunedin, starting with a game coachLelo Prado called a total disappointment.

The baseball team lost its first game to No. 4 rankedLouisville (1-1), 10-1. The Bulls trailed early after afour-run first inning bythe Cardinals andnever came close tocatching up.

USFs junior startingpitcher Nick Gonzalez wasunable to get out of the first inning and was replaced by freshmanreliever Justin Patrick aftergiving up three runs on two hits.

The Cardinals were unfazed by the substitution and scored five runs more runs against Patrick to put the game out of reach for the Bulls.

USFs starting lineupstruggled to find anopportunity for acomeback againstLouisvilles junior starting pitcher Jeff Thompson, whostruck out 12 batters in fivescoreless innings of work.

The Bulls did not put a run up on the board until the last inning a sign of more to come for the team.

USF scored nine runs in the first inning against Purdue(1-1) and won game two by a final score of 20-2.

I am real happy that we bounced back in the second game, Prado said.

The team scattered sixsingles to put a crookednumber up on the scoreboard early.

Senior center fielder JamesRamsay went 2-for-6 with four RBIs. Ramsay collected two of his four RBIs in the top half of the first after spraying a single to right field.

The Bulls 20-run tally against the Boilermakers marked a Big East record for the most runs scored in a game.

USFs senior starter JoeyLovecchio pitched fivescoreless innings andstruck out five in his season debut and freshmanreliever Jimmy Herget gave up one hit the rest of the way to shut the door on Purdue and earn his first save at USF.

USF continued its hitting streak against Indiana, but failed to cash in on scoringopportunities and lost 12-2.

Eleven bulls were leftstranded on the base paths, including three in the first and eighth innings, where USF had the opportunity to score with the bases loaded.

Indiana capitalized on itsopportunities with runners inscoring position and scored four runs on four hits in the top half of the fourth.

USF answered back in the bottom of the inning with two runs, thanks to anRBI single fromsophomore shortstop Kyle Teaf and a sacrifice fly fromAlfonso.

The game lay within theHoosiers hands from this point on.

Indiana scored three more runs in the fifth and shut down any hopes of a comeback with three more in the eighthafter sophomore catcher Kyle Schwarber launched a home run with two runners on base.

Senior first basemanJimmy Falla stepped up to theplate with one out and two runners on in the ninth, but grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to end the game.

USF will now head to FSU to take on the Seminoles in a three-game series beginning at4 p.m. on Friday.