No. 15 San Diego Eliminates UWM Baseball Team At Tempe Regional
June 5, 2010
TEMPE, Ariz. - The University of San Diego scored six runs in the first two innings and cruised from there in beating the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee baseball team in an elimination game at the NCAA Tempe Regional at Packard Stadium Saturday afternoon. The Toreros (37-21), ranked No. 15 in the country, took advantage of some early miscues by the Panthers (33-26) and a strong performance on the mound by AJ Griffin, advancing to play the winner of the Arizona State/Hawai'i game Sunday afternoon.
The 2010 campaign comes to a close for Milwaukee with the loss at 33-26 overall. That marks the seventh 30-win season in school history and first since 2006. The 33 wins are also the fifth-best total in program history.
Milwaukee dug itself an early hole, allowing three unearned runs in a 22-minute top of the first inning. Following an RBI-single off the bat of Chris Engell, two errors extended the frame and allowed Mike Ferraro to come through with the biggest hit, a three-run home run to deep right field that made it 4-0.
"We really set the tone negatively in the first inning and I just don't think we ever recovered," UWM head coach Scott Doffek said. "If you don't play well, you are going to have a negative result. I don't know that we didn't come to play, we just didn't execute. For whatever reason - I don't know if it was being a bit hungover from last night's game and then just that negative first inning - we just didn't respond. And a lot of the credit goes to their [USD] guys too."
The top of the first seemed to take some wind out of the sails of UWM, and a three-up/three-down bottom of the first did not help. The Toreros wasted no time in tacking on, plating two runs in the second, with Ferraro adding his fourth RBI of the contest with a seeing-eye single through the right side.
Griffin (8-3) pitched five strong innings before being pulled early. He allowed just two hits, walking one and striking out six in his scoreless outing. Ferraro was the star of the offense, ending 4-for-6 with six runs batted in during the 22-1 victory.
"We have 34 guys on this trip that have never played in this setting," Doffek said. "We have played some College World Series teams and some top 20 teams, but not in a regional setting. I don't think there is any substitute for that kind of experience, so we are hoping to use that as a springboard as something to build off."
Junior Cole Kraft led off the game with a single up the middle, but Milwaukee's next hit did not come until the fifth inning when sophomore Paul Hoenecke laced one to right center. The Panthers finally spoiled the shutout when senior Dan Buchholz doubled in a run in the sixth inning.
Junior Jayme Sukowaty (4-2) suffered the loss. A start after throwing a complete-game three-hitter against Wright State in the Horizon League Tournament, he was touched up for six runs - though just three earned - in one-plus inning, allowing six hits.
Eight pitchers saw action in the game, with sophomore Cameron Amsrud recording his 12th-straight scoreless outing with 1.2 innings of work.
The potent UWM offense, which came into regional play with a .326 team batting average, could just never get going on the trip to Arizona. A night after being limited to three hits by Arizona State, the team had just one hit through four innings against USD and ended the contest with four.
Buchholz had one of them to extend his hitting streak to nine games and junior Doug Dekoning had a hit in his last at bat of the season to push his average back to an even .300 overall.