Adam Morrison scattered eight hits, eating up 7 1/3 innings to open up the four-game weekend series. All the more important as FAU may be without its No. 1 and No. 2 starters, Mike Gipson and Barry Rooks who are injured and doubtful to pitch this weekend.
April 17, 2009
BOCA RATON, FL - Adam Morrison pitched into the eighth and the Florida Atlantic University offense backed him with six unanswered runs in the Owls' 9-5 comeback victory over upstart Bryant University Friday night.
William Block and Nick Criaris, senior starters for Florida Atlantic (19-16), each had two hits and two RBI. Block's two RBI came via a single during a decisive eighth inning in which the Owls had five hits and scored three times off Bryant's bullpen.
Bryant (26-11) has put together a nice season for a first-year NCAA DI program, especially considering it has played just six games on its home field. Pat O'Connor had two hits and Tim Norton hit his second triple.
Morrison (1-0) - making his first Friday start of the year - scattered eight hits, eating up 7 1/3 innings to open up the four-game weekend series. All the more important as FAU may be without its No. 1 and No. 2 starters, Mike Gipson and Barry Rooks who are injured and doubtful to pitch this weekend. Morrison's senior classmate Chris Schmitt picked up the save, allowing the Owls to improve to 16-7 at FAU Stadium.
Norton's RBI-triple in the second inning and an O'Connor sac fly in the third put Bryant up 2-1 in the early stages.
FAU took the lead in the fourth on a Criaris' double into the right-field corner. Jeremy Griffiths and Nick Delguidice, who had singled, both scored on the play. The two-RBI from Criaris put Morrison back on the mound in the fifth with a 3-2 lead.
The Owls' rally continued in the seventh. Laude hit Tom Hatcher to lead off the inning and was then pulled in favor of Matt Griswold. A walk and wild pitch moved Hatcher to third with two outs. With Griswold still on the mound, Hatcher would race home on a successful 2-3-6 pickoff play at the first-base bag. Hatcher's go-ahead run in the seventh was followed by three more in the eighth, highlighted by Block's two-RBI single.
The two teams will play a doubleheader Saturday beginning at 1 p.m. and a final game Sunday, also at 1 p.m.
GAME NOTES: Prior to the game there was a brief ceremony on the field recognizing FAU's record-setting team of 1999; attending alumni threw out the ceremonial first pitch... That 1999 Owls' squad still holds the NCAA record for consecutive wins (34) en route to finishing 54-9 and qualifying for FAU's first DI NCAA Regional.