June 2, 2006
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - In a game marred by two, one hour, 13 minute rain delays, in the fourth and seventh innings respectively, Southern Miss saw its ninth inning rally come up short, as it dropped a 10-8 decision to Troy to open play in the 2006 Tuscaloosa Regional, before 3,595 at Sewell-Thomas Stadium.
With the loss, Southern Miss falls to 38-22, while Troy improves to 46-14.
"Both teams battled," Southern Miss Head Coach Corky Palmer said. "We made a lot of mistakes. The game played out like I thought it would. We had numerous occasions to make a pitch to get out of trouble and we couldn't.
"I thought we were in good shape until the three-run home run. The rain delay did not affect us. We'll battle back tomorrow."
Southern Miss took a 2-0 lead in the top of the first. Trey Sutton singled to center on the first pitch of the game before advancing to third on a one out single through the right side by Toddric Johnson. Johnson went to second on a wild pitch and Kevin Coker walked with two outs to load the bases, before Sutton and Johnson scored on a two-RBI single to center field by Luke Adkins.
The Golden Eagles threatened again in the second. Jody Blount singled to begin the frame, advancing to second on a groundout by Brian Dozier. Then on a single to center by Sutton, Blount was thrown out at home. Maddox then singled, which gave him his 293rd career hit, breaking the previous record of 292 by Josh Cook, before Johnson walked to load the bases, but Michael Ewing hit into a fielder's choice that forced Johnson out at second to end the inning.
Troy made the score 2-1 in the bottom of the second. Josh Dew was hit by a pitch to start the inning, went to second on a wild pitch, third on a groundout by Blake Green, before scoring on a RBI sacrifice fly by Edgar Ramirez.
Southern Miss upped its lead to 4-1 in the third. With one out, Adkins walked and Carson followed with a single to left. Following a fly out by Blount, Dozier singled up the middle scoring Adkins and Carson.
Troy tied the game a 4-4 in the bottom of the third on a three run home run by Green.
The game was postponed for an hour and 13 minute rain delay in the fourth, after Maddox singled to begin the inning.
Troy took its first lead of the game in the bottom of the fifth. With one out, Dew and Green connected on back-to-back doubles, as Green's scored Dew, giving the Trojans a 5-4 lead. The Trojans make the score 6-4, as Jared Keel reached on a fielding error by Dozier, which allowed Green to score.
The Trojans threatened again in the bottom of the sixth, loading the bases, but failed to score.
Then before the top of the seventh could begin, the game was again postponed by rain, for another delay of an hour and 13 minutes.
Troy added another run in the bottom of the seventh, as Keel, who singled with one out and went to third on a single to right field by Felix, scored on a wild pitch by Scott Massey, to make the score 7-4. Following a pitching chance to Patrick Ezell, Ian Craze scored Felix from third on a RBI sacrifice fly to center field, as Troy took an 8-4 advantage.
Southern Miss made the score 8-5 in the top of the eighth, on a deep home run by Dozier to left field, his second of the year. Then with two outs, Johnson hit a line drive home run to left, his 11th of the season, that stayed fair down the left field line, cutting the Trojan lead to 8-6.
Troy answered the two runs in the bottom of the inning, on a two-run home run to right by Ramirez.
In the ninth, Adkins and Carson walked back-to-back to start the frame. Following a strikeout by Blount, Dozier reached on a fielder's choice, as Carson was forced out at second, advancing Adkins to third. Adkins then scored on a wild pitch, as Dozier got to second on the play. Sutton then singled through the right side, scoring Dozier, to make the score 10-8. But with Maddox, the potential game tying run at the plate, he struck out to end the game.
JJ Whetsel got the win for Troy, working 3.2 innings, allowing two hits and two runs, walking one and striking out five. Josh Dew got the save, pitching the final 1.1 innings, allowing one hit and two runs, walking three and striking out two.
Ryan Belanger (8-2) took the loss, lasting 1.2 innings, allowing two hits and two runs, walking one.
Sutton finished with three hits to lead Southern Miss, while Dozier had three RBIs.
Southern Miss returns to action on Saturday and will play the loser of the Alabama/Jacksonville State game at 2:30 p.m.
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