TAMPA -The Bulls got runs late but were unable to hold on to the win on Friday night.
USF battled but ended up falling to Louisville, 6-5, before a crowd of 1,393 at USF baseball complex.
"We fought like crazy," said head coach Lelo Prado. "We made too many mistakes to beat a good team."
The Cardinals got on the scoreboard first in the top of the third inning.
Louisville scored three runs on two hits to take a 3-0 lead before Andrew Barbosa got Stewart Ijames to strikeout swinging.
The Bulls responded with two runs on RBI-singles by James Ramsay and Jimmy Falla to trim Louisville's lead to 3-2.
Ramsay went 2-4 with one RBI and leads the team with 19 multi-hit games.
The Bulls got things going again in the eighth inning.
Louisville reliever Derek Self walked Luis Llerena with the bases loaded to score Anthony Diaz and tie the game at 3. Alex Mendez and Chad Taylor both picked up an RBI to give the Bulls their first lead of the game 5-3.
The Cardinals battled back in the ninth with two RBI-singles to take a 6-5 lead and seal the win.
"You have a one run lead in the ninth, you got to finish the job," said Prado.
Andrew Barbosa pitched 6 1/3 innings allowing three runs on four hits and eight strikeouts. The left-hander leads the Big East with 70 strikeouts.
The bullpen helped keep the game close, but was unable to hold off the Cardinals.
Relievers Adrian Puig, Kyle Parker, Andrew Loynaz and Austin Adams pitched a combined 2 2/3 innings allowing three hits, four runs and four strikeouts.
"We had some guys really pitch well in certain situations," said Prado. "Bobo (Barbosa) did a good job. We have to win games and that's the bottom line."
USF (26-13, 10-3) hopes to get even against Louisville noon Saturday.