Saturday Split Gives Blazers Series Over Marshall

UABSPORTS.COM John Frost hit .538 (7-for-13) in the series at Marshall
UABSPORTS.COM
John Frost hit .538 (7-for-13) in the series at Marshall
UABSPORTS.COM

March 30, 2013

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. ---- A big day at the plate from John Frost helped aid the UAB baseball team in earning a doubleheader split on Saturday and take 2-of-3 in the series at Appalachian Power Park.  UAB dropped the first game, 3-1, before bouncing back to win the finale, 12-4.

Frost finished 6-for-8 in the batter’s box on Saturday, with two doubles, two RBI and a run scored to help improve the Blazers to 12-15 overall and 2-4 in league play.

Marshall now sits at 11-15 and 1-2 in Conference USA action after the weekend.

Head coach Brian Shoop was pleased with his team’s effort, as the Blazers have now won four straight road series against the Thundering Herd.

“Sam was plenty good enough to win (game one), we just lost to a very good arm in (Aaron) Blair, who was throwing 94 (mph) in the sixth,” Shoop said.  “It was a great effort by the kids for bouncing back and winning the second game.

“John Frost, what a week at the plate for us. He just continues to hit and is an important piece of our lineup and is a very tough out.”

GAME 1: Marshall 3, UAB 1
In his second start of the week, Sam Kelley was the tough-luck loser as Marshall’s Aaron Blair outdueled the Blazer southpaw, 3-1 in game one.

Kelley worked into the seventh inning and was on cruise control until the fourth.  The lefty retired the first nine batters he faced, before a Blazer miscue in the fourth led to a pair of unearned runs to give MU a 2-1 advantage.

UAB scored the first run of the game in the top of the first, as Frost smoked a double to bring home Ivan De Jesus.

The Blazers had multiple chances against Blair, stranding eight total runners, including two in the first, third, fifth and sixth innings.

MU added an insurance run in the seventh, as pinch hitter Alfredo Brito lined a two-out RBI single in the last of the seventh.

Blair (4-1) earned the win for the Herd, going six innings, allowing one earned run on seven hits.  The tall right-hander walked four and struck out four.

Ryan Hopkins pitched three perfect innings of relief to collect his second save of the season.

Kelley (2-2) was saddled with the loss, logging six innings, giving up just three hits, and retiring the side in order in five of his six frames of work.  The lefty struck out two and walked one.

Frost finished 3-for-4 with two doubles and knocked in UAB’s lone run. 

GAME 2: UAB 12, Marshall 4
In the second game of the day, the Blazer bats wrapped out 12 hits in a 12-4 victory to claim the series with Marshall.

UAB fell behind 1-0 in after one inning of action, before touching home five times in the second. Tanner Bryant and Ryan Prinzing each drove in a run and Adam Lau roped a two-run single to give the Blazers a 5-1 lead.

Marshall made things interesting, scoring twice in the second ending the day for Blazer starter James Naile. Cory Eller (2-1) entered out of the bullpen, and worked three total innings, giving up just one run (earned) to claim the win.

Leading 6-3 in the fifth, MU scored on a RBI single by Andrew Dundon. With the bases loaded and two outs, Shoop called on lefty Turner Lee who recorded a strikeout to keep the two-run cushion intact.

The Herd loaded the bases again in the sixth, but Lee recorded another strikeout to escape a second jam in as many innings.

The Blazers added insurance runs, scoring six times over the last three frames to pull away with the win.

Michael Taylor (3-2) suffered the loss for Marshall, logging five innings, allowing six runs (three earned) off five hits.

At the plate, Lau had a career-day going 3-for-4 with three RBI, Frost added three hits and Jeff Schalk chipped in with two hits and two RBI.

UAB returns to the diamond on Tuesday, hosting Jacksonville State at 6:30 p.m. CT at Young Memorial Field.