TAMPA- Despite three hits from sophomore Jimmy Falla and senior Jonathan Koscso, the University of South Florida baseball team (10-13, 1-1) dropped a 9-3 decision to West Virginia (15-10, 1-1) Saturday evening at the USF Baseball Stadium.
Koscso and Falla accounted for six of the Bulls' 13 hits on the night. USF out hit West Virginia, 13-12, but left 13 men on base.
The Bulls tagged WVU starter Harrison Musgrave for 12 hits over the span of 8.0 innings but only could muster up three runs. Musgrave threw 140 pitches on the night.
USF starter Matt Reed retired the first seven batters he faced but fell into some trouble in the top of the third after surrendering a one-out walk and two consecutive singles leading to the opening scoring in the game for both teams.
The Bulls were quick to answer.
In the bottom of the frame, Koscso led off the inning with a single, stole second, then advanced to third on a wild pitch putting him in position to score on a one-out RBI groundout by junior Sam Mende.
The tie game was short lived as West Virginia scored three in the fourth. The Mountaineers would chase Reed in the fourth after a lead-off triple and an RBI single to make it 5-1.
The four plus innings for Reed were the shortest in five starts this season for the lefty. He would scatter eight hits, giving up six runs, all earned. He struck out two while walking one.
Reed suffered the loss, his second of the season.
Falla continued to swing with a two-out, RBI single in the bottom of the seventh to cut the WVU lead to 6-2. Andrew Longley walked after the Falla single to load the bases but they would stay loaded as Alex Mendez went down swinging to end the scoring threat.
After 3.1 innings of scoreless relief, WVU finally got to Bulls reliever Andrew Loynaz in the eighth scoring a run after he walked the first two batters of the inning. Jimmy Moran came into the game with two on and one out but WVU would go on to score three in the inning as Moran, making his first appearance since March 8th, fell victim to a two-run error by Brazeal at first and an RBI double by Grant Buckner.
USF picked up their third and final run of the night on an RBI single by Koscso, scoring Longley, who lead off the inning with a double.
The Bulls will look to take the series in the rubber match of the three game set. The finale on Sunday will begin at 1 p.m.
Tonight's attendance was 1685... The game was played in 2:49... The 4.0 innings plus inning by Reed was his shortest this season... Reed had went 6.0 innings or more in all four of his previous starts and 7.0 or more in three... The appearance for Moran is the first since March 8th vs. Florida Gulf Coast... Falla is seven for his last nine... The multi-hit game for Falla is his fifth in his last eight games... Andrew Loynaz worked a career-high 3.1 innings... All nine USF batters registered a hit but Falla and Koscso were the only ones to have more than one hit.