Baseball Blanked at South Florida
March 16, 2012
TAMPA, Fla. - The Lafayette baseball team continued to struggle offensively on its current road trip, falling at South Florida on Friday evening in Tampa, 5-0. Right-hander John Gentile worked seven strong innings on the bump for the Leopards.
With the loss, Lafayette falls to 4-9-1. The host Bulls, who are in the midst of a 22-game homestand and will not play outside of the Sunshine State this season until April 5, improve to 13-6.
Gentile (0-3) battled through seven innings, allowing four earned runs on nine hits and three walks. The co-captain of the Leopards struck out two batters.
Southpaw Andrew Barbosa started on the hill for South Florida. Barbosa (2-2) ceded three hits and one walk in six shutout innings while striking out four batters. Steven Leasure worked the final three stanzas to notch his first save.
After Gentile set the Bulls down in the order in the first inning, the home team broke through with a two-out rally in the second frame. Matt Hart doubled to start the offense, Andrew Longley drew a walk to keep the inning alive and Kyle Teaf singled through the right side to drive in the game's first run.
A leadoff walk and an error helped South Florida extend its lead in the bottom of the third frame. Back-to-back singles by James Ramsey and Todd Brazeal knocked in the two baserunners and started a three-run third inning. The Bulls posted another tally in the fourth stanza to open up a 5-0 cushion.
Gentile settled in at that point, allowing just a pair of singles over the next three innings before giving way to fellow right-hander Chris Boyce, who tossed a scoreless eighth. But the Leopards were unable to solve Barbosa. Leasure then retired the first eight batters he faced and pitched around two-out singles by Ruck and Casey in the ninth to preserve the shutout.
The three-game series at USF Baseball Stadium continues on Saturday at 6 p.m. with Ethan Perro taking the ball for Lafayette against the Bulls' Joey Lovecchio. The set concludes on Sunday at 1 p.m. with southpaw Connor Ortolf dealing opposite left-hander Matt Reed.