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Herd Drops C-USA Opener to UAB 10-6

Matt Kirkwood hit his third double of the season on Friday

March 29, 2013

Final Stats

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- A back-and-forth first couple of innings preceded a 10-6 loss for Marshall’s baseball team in the Conference USA opener Friday evening at Appalachian Power Park. 

Marshall (10-14, 0-1 C-USA) erased a couple of UAB (11-14, 1-3 C-USA) first inning homers by scoring four times in the bottom of the first, but the Blazers countered quickly with four in the second to regain the lead for good. 

Sophomore Eric Escobedo laced a base-clearing double to left-center field with the bases loaded in the bottom of the first to give Marshall the lead, but the Thundering Herd’s bats would remain quite for the remainder of the contest. 

Senior Gray Stafford collected the other RBI in the first inning, drawing a bases-loaded walk two batters prior to Escobedo’s double. 

Aided by two Marshall errors, UAB took the lead back for good in the second, scoring four runs (none earned) on four hits and a walk.

UAB’s Ivan De Jesus homered on the second pitch of the game to give the Blazers the early lead.  Three batters later, Ryan Prinzing hit a solo shot of his own.  Both homers went over the right field fence off freshman starter Chase Boster

Boster (1-4) was the losing pitcher.  The right-hander was saddled with six hits and seven runs, only three of which were earned.  He also walked three and struck out two. 

Six Herd relievers saw action in the loss, led by freshman Brandyn Sittinger who struck out one in a perfect fifth. 

Chase Ballard (1-2) worked from the pen for the Blazers, relieving starter Tanner Bryant who was chased after one and two-thirds.  Ballard went 7.1 innings with five K’s and the winning decision.  The righty gave up five hits and two walks which translated into one (earned) run in the sixth when Andrew Dundon sac flied Matt Kirkwood home to make it 10-6.

Escobedo and Kirkwood each led Marshall in hitting, going 2-for-4.  Kirkwood doubled in the sixth before scoring on Dundon’s sacrifice fly. 

Senior Alfredo Brito, who made his 100th career start for the Herd, finished 1-for-3 with a walk. 

Isaac Ballou was 1-for-2 with three walks.  Ballou has 113 career walks, ranking second in Marshall history to Josh Valle (120). 

Prinzing paced all hitters by going 3-for-5 with two runs and two RBIs.  De Jesus was 2-for-4 with two runs and two RBIs. 

Marshall and UAB will square off twice more, in a doubleheader scheduled to begin Saturday at 3 p.m. at Power Park.