March 25, 2006
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- Senior Lyle Northington posted a solid outing, going six strong and allowing only two earned runs, but the Blazers couldn't hold the lead, falling to No. 22 Southern Miss 7-4 in game two of a C-USA series at Young Memorial Field Saturday afternoon.
The loss drops the Blazers to 13-10 on the season, and 0-2 in C-USA play. Southern Miss moves to 19-6 overall and a perfect 2-0 in conference.
Northington threw well for head coach Larry Giangrosso, going six innings for only the second time is his career. The Detroit, Ala., native gave up seven hits while striking out one Golden Eagle hitter. Mitch Thorn, Jacob Legg and Drew Murray all pitched in relief for the Blazers, throwing a combined three innings. The trio gave up four earned runs, while striking out three hitters.
The UAB offense mustered up nine hits on the day, with four hitters have at least two hits. Danny Sawyer went 2-for-4 on the day, extending his team high hitting streak to 15 games. Jorge Gutierrez, Ryne Lovdahl and Billy Lichtner all had two hits for the Blazers.
Southern Miss got out of the gate, scoring a run in their first at bat to take the lead. UAB would respond in the bottom half of the second, plating two to take their first lead of the game. Lichtner ripped a single through the right side to start things off, and after Zac Ward was hit by a pitch UAB had two runners on with no outs. Gutierrez opened things up, singling off the pitcher to score Lichtner, tying it at 1. Ryan Metcalf, who reached on the fielders' choice, scampered home on a pass ball to take the Blazers first lead of the game, 2-1.
The Golden Eagles pushed a run across in the third, knotting the score at two. The Green and Gold responded, putting up two runs in the bottom of fifth to reclaim the lead. Levi Patmon
started the rally, singling down the right field line to open the inning. Phillip Bell
sacrificed him over to second, setting things up for the middle of the order. Sawyer walked, putting runs on first and second with only one out. Lichtner promptly delivered, hitting a double deep into the left center field gap, scoring both players and making it 4-2 UAB.
The lead would last for two innings, until Southern Miss put up four in the seventh to recapture the advantage. They added an insurance run in the eighth, pushing the score to its final margin at 7-4.
UAB will close out the series against Southern Miss Sunday at 1 p.m. at Young Memorial Field. The Blazers will send Jim Crew to the mound, who is 3-0 on the year with a 1.33 ERA. The Golden Eagles will counter with righthander Cliff Russum. For complete coverage, check www.uabsports.com.