Win, lose and draw for Temple baseball

A rainy weekend yielded the Owls baseball team a win, a loss and a draw. The Owls played a three-game weekend series against the University of Massachusetts Minutemen. Last Saturday a doubleheader was scheduled but

A rainy weekend yielded the Owls baseball team a win, a loss and a draw.

The Owls played a three-game weekend series against the University of Massachusetts Minutemen. Last Saturday a doubleheader was scheduled but the second game was rained out. Temple lost the first game, 14-3.

The delayed game was played as part of a doubleheader on Sunday. Temple won the first game, 1-0. The second game of the day was shortened to six innings and the teams tied 9-9.

Greg Powell dropped to 4-4 on the season from the mound in the first of the three games. He gave up 13 hits and 11 runs in his five innings of work.

UMass scored two runs in the first inning and then another two in the second on a Mike Kulak home run.

The Minutemen scored two more in the fourth before the Owls got their first hits of the game in the bottom of the inning. Rob Cucinotta hit his seventh home run of the year to put the Owls on the board with two runs.

Matt Powell came in for relief of his brother Greg but he, too, gave up three runs. Temple dropped the first of the series, 14-3.

In the second seven-inning game on Sunday, Jeff Rugg got the start for the Owls and gave up only one run.

The run came in the top of the sixth inning on a Kulak RBI. Kulak then tried to steal home on a passed ball but Rugg tagged him out at the plate.

Cucinotta got on base with a single and stole second. Sam Sabolchick drove him in with a single.

Rugg struck out Kevin O’Connell to start the seventh before giving up a single to Aaron Senez. Senez was then tagged out attempting to steal second. Scott Anderson grounded out to end the inning.

Joe Lyall walked to start the bottom of the inning. Chris Krusen bunted to move Lyall to second. Jim Tully then singled before Nick Skirkanich came in for relief of Craig Szado.

Keith Ramsay hit a shot down the first-base line and Lyall came running home from second to give the Owls the win, 2-1.

“Greg was throwing his fastball a lot and his curve wasn’t really working too much,” Rugg said of the first game. “He threw 130 pitches, I think, and 115 were fastballs.

“Today I threw maybe ten fastballs out of 100 pitches. I’m not really a hard thrower, I just try to mix it up and throw everything for a strike.”

Mike Caron started on the mound for the Owls in the next game. He got the nod thanks to his great performance against Delaware earlier that week.

Caron was rocked for six runs and six hits in only 3 innings of pitching. He gave up one run in the first and another two in the third. Through three, UMass led 4-0.

In the top of the fourth Caron walked the first batter, grounded out the second, and then gave up an RBI single to the next.

The next batter once again singled in a run and it was time for the Owls to go to the bull pen.

Matt Powell came in next but was not able to stop the Minutemen. He pitched only one out and gave up three hits.

Chris Morgan drove in a run with a double, and Senez hit a RBI single. The next batter singled and the revolving door of pitchers spun once again.

This time it would be Brandon Bruno, a junior with a 7.53 ERA. Bruno walked his first two batters, otherwise getting out of the inning unscathed. UMass scored five in the inning on four hits and one Temple error.

Cap Poklemba got Temple’s first hit of the game with a single in the bottom of the fourth.

Kyle Sweppenhiser sacrificed for the first Temple run and Bob Filler hit the next run in on a single. Temple trailed 9-2 after four.

Bruno looked excellent in his next two innings of work. He struck out two batters and only allowed one hit.

In the bottom of the fifth, Temple tied the game at nine.

Jeff Roma started off the inning with a single and Krusen followed suit. Sabolchick drove in the first run of the inning with a single.

Tully sacrificed in a run before Poklemba walked. Sweppenhiser then walked and the bases were loaded. Brian Hourgan was yanked after he walked Filler and Sweppenhiser. He gave up five hits and five runs through four and two outs.

Skirkanich came in relief again and gave up a two-run single to Lyall. A run then scored on a wild throw to second base. Then Roma, who started the inning, ended it with an RBI single before Krusen struck out.

The game was tied after five. Then, during the sixth inning, the clouds turned gray and the sound of thunder echoed through Erny field.

The umpires decided to call a rain delay. After all the tarps were placed on the field the game was called at nine apiece.

Temple resigned the rainy weekend with a 3-5-1 conference record.

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