Area Players in College Baseball Action During Weekend

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Published on February 25 2013 1:40 pm
Last Updated on February 25 2013 1:40 pm
Written by Millie Lange

LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Junior right-hander Chad Green, Effingham High School graduate, allowed only one hit in a career best seven shutout innings to lead the No. 4 Louisville baseball team to a 7-0 win over visiting Akron on Friday afternoon at Jim Patterson Stadium.

With the victory in the series-opener, the Cardinals improved to 4-1 overall, while the Zips dropped to 0-4 on the season. The two teams will continue the weekend series on Saturday at 2 p.m., ET before concluding on Sunday at 1 p.m.

Improving to 1-1 on the season, Green (Effingham, Ill./Effingham HS) had the best outing of his career while surpassing his previous long outing of 5.2 innings in 2011. Finishing with three strikeouts and just one walk, Green did not allow a hit until the seventh when Brady Stewart connected for a two-out single for Akron’s only hit against the Louisville starter.

After seven dominant innings from Green, freshman righty Kyle Funkhouser (Oak Forest, Ill./Oak Forest HS) followed out of the Louisville bullpen by striking out three in two scoreless innings of relief to close out the Cardinals’ first shutout of the season and their first overall since a 5-0 win over No. 20 St. John’s on May 11, 2012.

At the plate, junior third baseman Ty Young (Coatesville, Pa./Malvern Prep) led the Cardinals going 3-for-4 with a home run, three RBI and a stolen base, while sophomore infielder Sutton Whiting (New Wilmington, Pa./Louisville Ballard HS) continued his hot start to the season going 2-for-3 with his first career home run. Whiting has hit safely in all five games this season and is hitting .625 (10-for-16) with seven RBI and six runs scored overall.

Senior second baseman Nick Ratajczak (Joliet, Ill./Gulf Coast CC) finished 2-for-5 with two runs scored and a stolen base for the Cardinals, who finished with a 12-3 advantage in hitting on Friday. Junior outfielder Cole Sturgeon (Owensboro, Ky./Owensboro Catholic HS) was 2-for-4 with a run scored, while junior outfielder Coco Johnson (Benton Harbor, Mich./Central Arizona) added a double, was hit three times, had an RBI, a stolen base and scored once in the win.

The Cardinals broke through for an early run on Friday against Akron starter Jon Pusateri when Young connected on a 1-2 pitch for an RBI single up the middle to score Johnson for the 1-0 lead. Johnson started the scoring chance when he was hit by pitch with two outs and then moved into scoring position with his stolen base.

Following a scoreless second inning, Louisville pushed its advantage to 2-0 in the third when Young sent a 3-1 pitch from Pusateri over the wall in right center for his first home run of the season and the seventh of his career.

Saturday Action

Jeff Thompson’s dominance on the mound extended from the Sunshine State to the Bluegrass State.

In his second start of the season, the junior right-hander tossed six shutout innings in leading the fourth-ranked Louisville baseball team to an 8-0 victory Saturday over Akron at Jim Patterson Stadium. It was the Cardinals’ second straight shutout of the Zips following their 7-0 win on Friday.

Thompson (Greenville, Ind./Floyd Central HS) earned his second victory after debuting with a 12-strikeout performance against USF in Clearwater, Fla., that netted him BIG EAST Baseball Pitcher of the Week honors. The 6-foot-6 hurler gave himself the opportunity for a repeat by striking out five and allowing four hits with three walks.

The Cardinals (5-1) won their fifth straight game while the Zips (0-5) remained winless on the season. Louisville rode Thompson’s strong outing and an efficient offense that needed only five hits through five innings to score six runs. Half of those runs came via sacrifice flies.

Sunday Action

On a day dominated by pitching and defense, the fourth-ranked Louisville baseball team closed out a weekend sweep of Akron with a 2-1 win on Sunday afternoon at Jim Patterson Stadium.

With their sixth straight win, the Cardinals improved to 6-1 on the season while the Zips dropped to 0-6 overall with all six losses coming at the hands of nationally ranked foes.

With Sunday’s game even at 1-1, junior outfielder Adam Engel (Cincinnati, Ohio/Loveland HS) started the decisive scoring chance for the Cardinals with his one-out single up the middle off Akron starter J.T. Brubaker. Engel then stole second and third before scoring on an RBI sacrifice fly to left field off the bat of senior second baseman Nick Ratajczak (Joliet, Ill./Gulf Coast CC).

EASTERN ILLINOIS UNIVERSITY

HATTIESBURG, Miss.  – Junior Joe Greenfield threw a complete-game shutout to lead the Panthers baseball team over Alcorn State, 2-0, on Saturday afternoon at the Southern Miss Tournament. EIU improves to 2-4 on the year.

Greenfield (1-0) threw six strikeouts and only allowed one walk and six hits on the afternoon. In two starts this season, the Orland Park, Ill., native has posted a 0.66 ERA with 12 strikeouts through 13.2 innings of action.

“Joe Greenfield was outstanding today,” said Eastern Illinois head coach Jim Schmitz. “It was impressive that he went nine innings in only his second outing of the year. Give credit to Coach Anderson and his work with the pitchers. Our pitchers have been getting stronger as the game goes on this season.”

Saturday's Action

Following an hour rain delay in the top of the eighth inning, the Panther baseball team rallied back to get within two against No. 21/30 Southern Miss but the Golden Eagles added two late runs to pull out the 6-3 victory on Friday night at Pete Taylor Park.

Jacob Reese hit a one-out, two-RBI double in the eighth inning to get the Panthers on the scoreboard and start the late-inning rally. Following a ground out by Derek Page on the following play, Nick Priessman cut the Panther deficit to two (5-3) with an RBI single to left field.

Southern Miss (4-1) added one run in the bottom of the frame before Daniel Wineski got the final Eastern Illinois (1-4) batters to ground out to end Panther upset bid in the ninth inning.

Teutopolis graduate Luke Bushur pitched one inning allowing no hits, no walks and striking out one for EIU.

Sunday Action

The Panther baseball team dropped its final game of the Southern Miss Tournament, 5-4, against Missouri State on Sunday afternoon at Pete Taylor Park. EIU falls to 2-5 on the year.

Tied at four heading into the bottom of the ninth inning, Koby Peebles hit a walk-off RBI double to give Missouri State the win. The Bears improved to 5-1 on the year.

EIU took a 2-0 advantage in the top of the fourth inning on back-to-back RBI singles by Trey Russell and Tyler Schweigert. Missouri State responded by scoring three runs on three hits in the bottom of the frame, taking a 3-2 lead.

Dylan Becker hit a two-out RBI single in the sixth inning to give the Bears a 4-2 lead before EIU added one run in each of the next two innings to tie the game at four. Nathan Sopena scored in the seventh inning on Caleb Howell fielder’s choice while Demetre Taylor drove in the tying run in the eighth inning on a sacrifice fly to centerfield.

North Clay graduate Andrew Grahn started the game and pitched 3.2 innings allowing four hits, three runs, two walks and striking out one. Bushur pitched two innings allowing two hits, one run, one walk and one strikeout. Jaden Widdersheim, a Stewardson-Strasburg graduate, pitched one innings allowing five hits, one run, one walk and three strikeouts.

Kaskaskia Sunday Action

Kaskaskia split a DH against Meridian MS Sunday. They got rained out Saturday.  In Game 1 Sunday they were down 3-0 after 4 innings the Blue Devils got 3 in the 5th and 3 more in the 6th and added 1 in the 7th to win 7-4.  Joey Coonrod was the winning pitcher and Steven Reynolds (Mt. Zion) got the save.

In Game 2 they lost a tough extra 9 inning affair 2-1. The Blue Devils scored 1 in the first off of Big Lefty Mitchell Babb who has signed to pitch for Ole Mississippi next year.  Nick Gardewine started for Kaskaskia and held Meridian scoreless through 4 before they plated one run in the 5th.  Gardewine then pitched two more scoreless innings before ending his day going 7 innings, giving up 4 hits, 1 run and striking out 4.  In the bottom of the 9th Meridian scored the winning run on a throwing error.  Kaskaskia's record is now 4-2 and will be at Vincennes University next Saturday for a DH.