April 11, 2009
CINCINNATI, Ohio - Cincinnati right-handed pitcher Michael Hill allowed three earned runs on five hits in 6.0 innings and the Bearcats benefitted from a season-high tying four Notre Dame errors in a 7-3 victory in the opening game of a doubleheader from Marge Schott Stadium Saturday afternoon. Cincinnati improved to 16-14 overall and 5-6 in the BIG EAST, while the Irish dropped to 19-12 and 5-6.
Hill (1-3) struck out five, walked two and picked up his first victory of the season. Jake Geglein tossed a scoreless seventh inning, retiring three of the four batters he faced.
Sophomore Brian Dupra (Rochester, N.Y.) tossed his second consecutive complete game for Notre Dame, but allowed seven runs, six earned, in 6.0 innings of work. He fanned a career-high tying six and walked three. Dupra dropped to 3-4 on the season.
The Irish managed just six hits in the game and no Notre Dame player had more than one.
Cincinnati grabbed a first inning lead on Mike Spina's RBI double and pushed to the lead to 4-0 thanks to a critical Irish error. With the bases loaded and one out, T.J. Jones grounded into a possible inning-ending double play, but the grounder got underneath the glove of junior Ryne Intlekofer (Moorpark, Calif.) at second base allowing two runners to score. Coleman then singled to give Cincinnati a 4-0 lead.
The Irish answered in the top of the second inning when sophomore Dave Casey (Whitefish Bay, Wisc.) absolutely belted his first career home run. The solo bomb not only cleared the scoreboard in right field, but crashed halfway up the façade of Fifth Third Bank Arena that sits some 30-40 feet behind the wall.
After cruising through the Cincinnati second inning 1-2-3, Dupra allowed a leadoff double to Lance Durham in the third before retiring the next two Bearcats, but Kendal Coleman followed with an RBI single to right field. Junior Billy Boockford (Glen Elyn, Ill.) charged the ball quickly in an attempt to make a play at the plate to nail Durham, but the right fielder mishandled the ball and Durham not only scored easily, but Coleman moved into scoring position on the error.
Notre Dame finally seemed to solve Hill in the top of the fourth inning. Casey drew a one-out walk and senior Jeremy Barnes (Garland, Texas) followed with a single. Casey hustled all the way to third base and Barnes also moved into scoring position when Cameron Satterwhite tried to throw Casey out at third base. Boockford and sophomore Greg Sherry (Mendham, N.J.) each followed with hit-and-run RBI singles to make it 5-3. Sophomore Cameron McConnell (Bannockburn, Ill.) then smoked Hill's 2-1 offering that nearly knocked over Cincinnati Chris Peters, but the shortstop caught the liner and doubled off Sherry, who was running from first base on the pitch.
Dupra again sent the Bearcats down in order in the fourth, but Notre Dame was equally silent in the top of the fifth.
Cincinnati got back two runs to regain a four run lead, 7-3, in the bottom of the fifth inning. The Bearcats opened the frame with back-to-back singles from Spina and Durham. Cory Hough walked to load the bases. Dupra plunked Jones to make it 6-3 and Coleman pushed the advantage to 7-3 on an RBI fielder's choice.
Boockford did draw a leadoff walk off Hill to open the seventh inning. Geglein also surrendered a pinch hit single from junior Brayden Ashdown (Tucson, Ariz.), but struck out pinch hitter Matt Grosso and sophomore Golden Tate (Hendersonville, Tenn.) looking to end the game.