UAB Tops UCF, 5-1, To Close Out 2013 Season

RHP Alex Luna went 6.1 shutout innings to earn the win

May 24, 2013

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HOUSTON ---- The UAB baseball team received 6.1 shutout innings from starter Alex Luna, as the Blazers defeated the UCF Knights, 5-1, on Friday night at Reckling Park to conclude their play at the Conference USA Tournament.

The win rounds out the 2013 season for the eighth-seeded Blazers with a record of 23-36 overall, in the final game of the year. UAB dropped the first two games of the conference tournament to be eliminated from championship game contention in the pool play format.  The contest was also the last for No. 5 UCF, as the Knights dropped to 29-30.

Luna (2-4) worked into the seventh inning, yielding only two hits, both singles, walking two and fanning seven to earn his second victory of the season.  The sophomore used three fly outs and six ground outs, including a trio of double plays from the Blazer defense. In addition, Luna faced just two over the minimum during his outing.

Cameron Rose pitched the final 2.2 innings for the Blazers in relief of Luna to close out the season on a bright note.

Griffin Gum continued to swing a hot bat for the Blazers, leading off the bottom of the first by smoking a double to right. The next batter, Ryan Prinzing, lined a ball right at the UCF left fielder, which was misplayed, allowing Gum to score an unearned run.

Neither team would mark the scoreboard in the second, but the Blazers produced some action in the last of the third. UAB loaded the bases with one out against UCF starter Brian Adkins (4-8). Senior Tanner Bryant, playing in his final game in Green and Gold, laced a two-run single to left.

Later in the frame, UAB loaded the bases again, on a Tyler Mims walk, ending the day for Adkins. The southpaw struggled with control walking four batters in 2.2 innings on the bump. UCF reliever Spencer Davis was called out of the Knights’ bullpen and the righty kept the contest a three-run game, getting a ground out to end the third.

In the fourth, the Blazers added another run, again aided by UCF. With Tanner Bryant occupying third base, Davis uncorked a wild pitch to the backstop, allowing the Blazers to tack on an additional run and expand its lead to 4-0.

The Blazers added another run in the sixth, as Jeff Schalk, who doubled to start the frame, came home on an infield error by the UCF defense.

UCF scored its lone run in the top of the eighth on a RBI ground out by James Vasquez.

Erik Hempe accounted for two of UCF’s four hits, as he doubled and scored in the loss.

Friday night marked the final game for seniors Bryant, Harry Clark, John Frost and Jacob German