May 25, 2006
HOUSTON - Third-seeded Tulane scored runs in seven-consecutive innings in a 12-1 defeat of No. 7-seed Marshall Thursday in the 2006 Conference USA Baseball Championship at Reckling Park on the campus of Rice University in Houston. The game was called after eight innings because of Conference USA's 10-run rule. The loss eliminates Marshall from the championship, while the Green Wave advances to face the loser of the UAB-Memphis contest at 4 p.m. Friday.
Chris Monaco (Sr., Tucson, Ariz.) stole two bases in the third inning to give him the Marshall career record with 60, topping Aaron Williams' previous mark of 59, set from 1996-99. Adam Frederick (Sr., Franklin, Pa.) had two of Marshall's five hits and finished his career with a school-record 250.
Matt Riser went 4-for-5 with three runs scored to lead the Green Wave, while 2006 Conference USA Player of the Year Mark Hamilton homered and drove in three as part of a 3-for-5 performance.
Marshall struggled to get a key hit, finishing 1-for-13 with runners on base and stranding eight baserunners.
Jeremy Slone (Jr., Paintsville, Ky.) gave up seven runs, 13 hits and two walks while striking out two in finishing the season with a 3-8 record. Brandon Gomes (6-6) notched the victory for Tulane, going six innings and allowing one run, four hits and four walks while fanning four.
Tulane (40-18), ranked 17th in the country, scored single runs in the second through fifth innings, then broke the game open with a three-run sixth inning. The Green Wave took advantage of three singles in the second inning, scoring on a Ty Wallace sacrifice fly to take a 1-0 lead. Tulane then tacked on another run in the third inning, as Nathan Southard tripled to center field to bring Hamilton home from first.
Tim Guidry pushed the Green Wave's lead to three in the fourth inning with a solo home run to left center field. Hamilton gave Tulane another run in the fifth inning with a solo blast to left.
Marshall (22-32) had good opportunities early but left the bases loaded in the first inning and stranded two in the third.
The Herd scored a run in the fifth but came about a foot away from tying the score at four. With one out, Frederick singled to bring home Aaron Levinson (Sr., Seattle, Wash.). Rich Russell (Sr., Toronto, Ontario) was then hit by a pitch - his 22nd HBP of the season, tying the Conference USA single-season record. On the ensuing pitch, Brendan Murphy (Jr., Chattanooga, Tenn.) hit a drive to left field, but Riser made the catch at the wall. Adam Ptacek (Sr., Assaria, Kan.) then flied out to end the threat.
Tulane came right back with three runs in the sixth to oust Slone from the game. With one out, Riser and Cat Everett hit back-to-back singles. Warren McFadden followed with an RBI double and Hamilton was intentionally walked. Brian Chrisman (So., Pittsburgh, Pa.) came on to face Southard and surrendered a first-pitch single to plate Riser. Brad Emaus then hit a sacrifice fly to center to give Tulane a 7-1 lead.
The Green Wave added three runs in the seventh against Chrisman, then plated two runs in the eighth inning on run-scoring singles by Everett and McFadden to push the lead to 12-1.