FGCU falls short in 5-4 loss to Indiana University of Pennsylvania
Monday, March 08, 2004
Fort Myers, FL – Just as in the earlier game of the day, the Eagles' defense was inconsistent and the bats stayed cold as they dropped another close one, 5-4, to Indiana University of Pennsylvania. FCGU's record on the season is now 17-8. IUP got on the board first by taking advantage of three first inning Eagle errors to take a 2-0 lead. After starter Jason Short got both of the first two hitters to strike out looking, Eric McNeil chopped a single to third and took second on an errant throw by the third baseman Chris Garcia. Clean up hitter Brendan Malone followed with a single to center that scored McNeil and then took second base on an overthrow to the plate by centerfielder Mike Howard. Kyle Blinka then ripped the third consecutive single to right field to score Malone and make the score 2-0. The Eagles answered back with a run of their own on an RBI double by sophomore catcher Jason Cooper that scored freshman Travis Parrott, who had doubled in the previous at bat. Unfortunately for the Eagles, the Bears would put up another 2 spot in bottom of the third to make the score 4-1. Although Bears starter Jim Mock was shutting down the FGCU batters, the Eagles still had some fight left in them. In the bottom of the sixth the Eagles were able to muster two runs and make it a two run ballgame, 5-3. Sophomore catcher Jason Cooper led off the inning with a walk and Senior Chris Brown followed with a double to put runners on second and third with no one out. After inducing a pop up for the first out of the inning, Mock left a pitch over the middle of the plate that Howard ripped to left field for a two run single making the score 5-3. As the game went into the bottom of the ninth the Eagles looked poised to put together a rally and they alomst pulled it off. Pinch hitter Michael Mathews led off the two out rally with a single through the right side and Freshman Travis Parrott followed with another single in the exact same place. Parrott finished the game 3 for 4 with one run scored. Cooper then won a long fought battle that resulted in a single up the middle that scored Mathews and made it a one run game. Unfortunately for the Eagles the rally fell just short as Brown then popped up into foul territory to end the game. Mock got the win for the Bears by working seven innings and giving up three runs, two earned, on six hits while striking out five. Reliever Chris Kelly earned the save with two quality innings of work. Short (3-2) picked up the loss for the Eagles with six innings of work in which he gave up five runs, four earned, on ten hits while striking out six. Jason Cooper had an excellent game at the plate going 2 for 4 with one run scored and two runs batted in. Brown also contributed two hits in the losing effort. The Eagles (17-8) will play vs. East Stroudsburg starting at 7:00 pm.