Hoosiers Drop Season Opener to UCONN, 8-0
Feb. 17, 2012
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Indiana Baseball (0-1) ran into a buzzsaw by the name of Brian Ward Friday night in the season opener, falling victim to Connecticut's pitching ace and his 7.1 innings of shutout baseball. The 27th-ranked Huskies (1-0) won the ball game by a final score of 8-0.
Freshman third baseman Sam Travis had a nice collegiate debut in the batters' box, poking a single down the right-field line and a double just inside the left-field chalk in back-to-back at-bats. Micah Johnson posted Indiana's only other extra-base hit, stroking a pitch over the left fielder's head for a stand-up double.
On the mound, sophomore Matt Dearden shined for the Cream and Crimson. The Gainesville, Fla., native impressed in front of family and friends, tossing 2.2 innings of no-hit baseball. He struck out four Huskies while walking just two. Fellow sophomore Reed Reznicek came out guns blazing as well, retiring the first six batters he faced. A variety of IU mishaps (fielding errors, wild pitch, etc.) got to Reznicek in the top of ninth though, giving up two unearned runs and a total of four.
Connecticut was able to strike early, taking advantage of a quartet of two-out RBI-hits for a 4-0 lead after an inning and a half. The Huskies then rode the back of their starting pitcher Ward and his bullpen cohort, Ryan Moore, to a shutout. Moore closed out the final 1.2 innings for UCONN, striking out three while posting a lone walk and no hits.
Indiana garnered a few scoring opportunities, stranding nine base runners, six of which were in scoring position.
Little rest for the weary as the Hoosiers head back to Al Lang Stadium early Saturday morning to take on the Cincinnati Bearcats (0-0). First pitch is scheduled for 10 a.m. A Live audio broadcast and GameTracker live stats will be available for the contest. LHP Joey DeNato takes the bump for Indiana while Cincinnati's starting pitcher is up in the air as their game on Friday against Purdue got rained out.
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