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USF vs. Pitt
Game One: W, 8-1

Up Next:
Saturday, April 4 | vs. Pittsburgh | 7 p.m.
Sunday, April 5 | vs. Pittsburgh | 1 p.m.


TAMPA – University of South Florida (17-10, 5-2) sophomore starting pitcher Randy Fontanez recorded his third complete game and second win of the season in USF’s 8-1 victory over Pittsburgh (17-8, 4-3) Friday night at Red McEwen Field.

“I am very proud about how the guys came out today. We came out ready to play," said Coach Lelo Prado. "When we come out ready to play, and when we play with that kind of that intensity, it makes it fun for the crowd to see us play."

Fontanez struck out six and allowed only one unearned run from eight hits in his 9.0-inning complete game.

“Whenever they got guys on base or got a hit, it was with two outs," said Prado. "Randy had great stuff to get himself out of innings. Another great job by Randy."

USF produced offensively, outhitting the Panthers 13-8, totaling four doubles along the way.

"Our guys came out ready to play, and they played their best game of the year," added Prado.

Redshirt freshman Todd Brazeal tagged a pair of two-baggers in the game, his team-leading 10th and 11th of the year. This is the fourth game he has recorded two doubles in a game – the others were Samford (2/27), Towson (3/1) and Rutgers (3/21).

Sophomore Stephen Hunt caught fire with a 3-for-5 night and classmate Ryan Lockwood extended his hitting streak to 10 games in his 2-for-4 outing.

“It was really good to see Hunt get going. He had been struggling. We got good production from Brazeal and Lockwood and everyone," said Prado.

Lockwood also extended hi s streak of reaching base safely to 70 games. In a recent nation-wide poll of college SIDS, we found that in 2007 Andy Dirks of Wichita State had a 74-game streak, but Lockwood’s seems to be the longest current streak.

USF took a 3-0 lead in the third, then added one more in the fourth to take the 4-0 lead after three. Pittsburgh tagged their first hit of the game in the fourth, but didn’t score until the seventh. The Bulls answered with four in the bottom half of the seventh to earn their fifth BIG EAST win of the year.

With one out in the second, USF strung together five hits and a sac fly to score their three runs. Freshman Sam Mende sent a base hit up the middle, then freshman Daniel Rockhold doubled to right center, picking up an RBI when Mende scored. Sophomore Junior Carlin, junior Peter Brotons and sophomore Ryan Lockwood each punched out base hits then sophomore Jonathan Koscso sent a sac fly to right, giving USF the 3-0 lead.

In the third, Brazeal sent a leadoff double down the left line then senior Chris Rey drove him in with a single to right field.

Fontanez was perfect through 3.2 innings until Joe Leonard and Morgan collected back-to-back two-out base hits in the fourth. Both runners were left stranded after Danny Lopez grounded out to Brazeal at first base.

After holding Pitt scoreless through six innings, Fontanez gave up a two-out double to Nathan Hood in the seventh. Matt Litzinger then put down a bunt and an errant throw allowed Hood to score before Fontanez ended the inning by forcing Cory Brownsten to pop up.

USF batted around in the seventh adding four runs to their lead. Lockwood drew a one-out walk, Koscso connected on a base hit and Hunt reached on a fielder’s choice, which plated Lockwood. Brazeal then tagged his second double of the game, an RBI shot down the left line, his 11th two-bagger of the year.  Mende drew a bases-loaded walk to score Koscso. Rockhold sent a sac fly to left field to plate USF’s eighth and final run of the game.

"We played a sound game. It was the first one all year that we played nine innings of intense baseball,” said Prado.

The Bulls and Panthers will meet Saturday at 7 p.m., then wrap up the three-game series at 1 p.m. Sunday at Red McEwen Field.

Game Notes
Sophomore centerfielder Ryan Lockwood extends his hitting streak to 10 games. Lockwood posted a 32-game hitting streak, with 30 in a row in 2008 added to a pair to start the season in 2009.

Ryan Lockwood also extended hi s streak of reaching base safely to 70 games. In a recent nation-wide poll of college SIDS, we found that in 2007 Andy Dirks of Wichita State had a 74-game streak.

Redshirt freshman Todd Brazeal tagged a pair of doubles in the game, his team-leading 10th and 11th of his career. This is the fourth game he has recorded two doubles in a game – the others were Samford (2/27), Towson (3/1) and Rutgers (3/21).

Sophomore starting pitcher Randy Fontanez pitched his third complete game of the season, a six-strikeout, 9.0-inning performance.