Michigan Drops Season Opener to No. 21 Louisville

Feb. 18, 2011

Box Score |  Notes |  Photo Gallery 

Site: St. Petersburg, Fla. (Al Lang Field)
Event: Big Ten/Big East Challenge
Score: #21 Louisville 6, Michigan 3
Records: U-M (0-1), Louisville (1-0)
Next U-M Event: Saturday, Feb. 19 -- vs. St. John's (St. Petersburg, Fla.), 1 p.m.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - The University of Michigan baseball team opened its 2011 season with a 6-3 loss to No. 21 Louisville Friday afternoon (Feb. 18) on the first day of the Big Ten/Big East Challenge at Al Lang Field. Redshirt junior Garrett Stephens (Davison, Mich./Davison) hit a two-run home run in the fourth and three Wolverine pitchers combined for five strikeouts, but Michigan could not overcome a four-run second inning from the Cardinals.

Louisville scored a run in the first off redshirt sophomore starter Bobby Brosnahan (Ann Arbor, Mich./Pioneer), who retired the first two hitters before giving up a double to Ryan Wright. Zak Wasserman then doubled over the head of redshirt sophomore Kevin Krantz (Traverse City, Mich./Central), plating Wright for an early 1-0 lead. Louisville looked to make it 2-0, but freshman Michael O'Neill (Powell, Ohio/Olentangy Liberty) made a great throw off a JJ Ethel single to right to get Wasserman at the plate.

Brosnahan walked Louisville's Cade Stallings to start the second. He moved to second on a one-out walk to Alex Chittenden. Both runners moved up a base on a wild pitch and Stallings crossed the plate on a Drew Haynes single. Chittenden made it 3-0, scoring on a sacrifice fly from Adam Engel. Kyle Grieshaber then tripled to right to score Haynes and Greishaber made it 5-1 on Wright's second double of the game. Brosnahan got out of the inning and he induced Wasserman into a fly out.

Michigan scored its first run of 2011 in the third. Redshirt freshman Zach Johnson (Grandville, Mich./Grandville) reached on an infield single and moved to second on an O'Neill single to second. Both runners moved up on a passed ball and sophomore Patrick Biondi (Woodhaven, Mich./Divine Child) brought in Johnson on a sacrifice fly to center.

The Maize and Blue cut the lead to 5-3 in the fourth on Stephens' third career home run, which cleared the wall in rightfield, plating sophomore Derek Dennis (Ada, Mich./Forest Hills Northern), who walked prior to the Stephens at-bat.

Louisville settled down on the mound, allowing just a walk to junior Coley Crank (Pinole, Calif./Pinole Valley) in the sixth and a single to junior John Lorenz (Frankfort, Ill./Lincoln-Way East) in the eighth. The Cardinals added insurance in the eighth as Haynes doubled and scored on pinch hitter Cole Sturgeon's single to center.

Brosnahan struck out three, allowing eight hits and five runs with two walks in five-plus innings. Redshirt sophomore Tyler Mills (Mt. Pleasant, Mich./Mt. Pleasant) made his first career appearance and struck out two, allowing four hits and a run in two innings. Junior Kevin Vangheluwe (St. Clair, Mich./Lake Shore) pitched the scoreless eighth for U-M, allowing a hit in the frame.

The win went to Matt Koch, who struck out eight and gave up four hits and two earned runs in five innings. Tony Zych had the save, striking out two in the ninth.

Stephens drove in a pair for Michigan, while five different Wolverines had a base hit apiece. For Louisville, Haynes was a perfect 3-for-3 with two runs, while Wright, Wasserman and Ethel had two hits apiece.

Michigan will continue play in the Big Ten/Big East Challenge on Saturday (Feb. 19) as U-M faces St. John's at 1 p.m. at Al Lang Field.

Contact: Kent Reichert (734) 763-4423

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