Eagles post first win of the year in series finale - Tri-State News, Weather & Sports

Eagles post first win of the year in series finale

TAMPA, FL(WFIE) -

The number-one ranked University of Southern Indiana baseball team posted its first win of the 2015 season with a 9-7 victory over the second-ranked University of Tampa Sunday afternoon in Tampa, Florida. USI goes to 1-2, while Tampa falls for the first time in 2015 and sees its record fall to 8-1.
 
The Screaming Eagles got the bats going in the first inning, posting a three-spot in the opening frame. Junior rightfielderKyle Kempf (Evansville, Indiana) opened the scoring with an RBI-single to score junior centerfielder Hamilton Carr(Evansville, Indiana).
 
Senior shortstop/closer Matt Chavarria (Carlsbad, New Mexico) would cap off the first inning with a two-run home run, scoring Kempf, and giving USI the 3-0 lead. The home run was Chavarria's first of the year.
 
USI extended the lead to 4-0 in the third inning when freshman leftfielder Drake McNamara (Mt. Vernon, Indiana) pushed a run across with a bases-loaded walk. The 4-0 lead would be short-lived as the Spartans rallied with five runs in the bottom half of the inning to take their only lead of the game, 5-4.
 
The Eagles regained the lead the in the top of the fourth, 6-5, on a two-run home run by Kempf and re-extended the lead to two runs, 7-5, on a sixth-inning RBI-single by  Chavarria. Chavarria would end the day with three hits and three RBIs, while Kempf had a pair of hits and also had three RBIs.
 
After Tampa cut the lead to 7-6 in the seventh, USI got the run back in the top of the eighth and lengthened the margin to 9-6 on a home run by McNamara in the top of the ninth. McNamara also had three hits in the contest, including his first collegiate home run.
 
The Spartans cut the USI lead down to 9-7 in the top of the ninth, but Chavarria shut the door, getting the final three batters to preserve the victory and get his first save of the year.
 
USI freshman right-hander Sean Pedley (Owensboro, Kentucky) picked up his first collegiate win in relief of junior right-hander Lucas Barnett (Sellersburg, Indiana), who started and worked the first 2.1 innings. Pedley worked 3.1 scoreless innings, allowing three hits and striking out two.
 
Senior right-hander Andrew Mercer (Mt. Pearl, Newfoundland) followed Pedley to the mound, working a pair of innings, before giving way to Chavarria in the eighth.
 
The Eagles are slated to return to the friendly surroundings of the USI Baseball Field February 20-22 when they host Grand Valley State University for a three-game series. Game coverage of the series can be found on GoUSIEagles.com.

Provided by USI Sports Information Department

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