South Florida Topples Saints, 10-5
March 8, 2003
Jon Uhl returned to the form he displayed while winning a staff-high nine games a year ago and South Florida topped Siena College for the second consecutive day, 10-5 Saturday afternoon at Red McEwen Field. Matt Mueller had two hits and two RBI for the Saints in a losing effort.
Uhl, a junior right-hander out of Tampa's Leto High School, tossed a season-high 7 1/3 innings and improved to 3-0 while collecting a win in his second straight start. He scattered five singles and has not allowed an extra-base hit in his last three outings covering 18 1/3 innings.
Uhl's performance that included 13 ground-ball outs, dropped Siena to 0-13. The Saints have played a difficult schedule and are closing a season-opening stretch that has included series at Florida State, Florida, Florida International and Florida Atlantic.
"You can't take them for granted," said Uhl. "If you make mistakes pretty much any team we play is going to take advantage. I was fortunate enough that my ball was moving a lot, I got a lot of ground balls and the defense made some good plays behind me and you have to appreciate that."
USF (10-4) scored in four consecutive innings beginning with a five-run second. Devin Ivany and Allen Shirley led off the frame with singles and Ronnie Handley followed with an RBI double into left-center field. Mike Choquette's one-out single brought home Shirley and Handley and the Bulls led 3-0.
Mike Cunningham then homered for the first time since his freshman season in 2000 as USF built a 5-0 lead. Cunningham, the leadoff hitter, followed his 5-of-5 game in Friday's series opener with a 3-of-3 day at the plate while driving in three runs. He was intentionally walked in the fifth as he reached base in all nine of his weekend plate appearances and raised his average to a team-high .481 following 14 games.
USF's five-run second may have affected Uhl more than anything Siena did at the plate although he allowed just a third-inning walk that he left stranded on second.
The Bulls added a run in the third when Ivany homered for the first time and then two in the fourth and two in the fifth.
Siena scored a run in the fifth and three in the eighth off Uhl.
The clubs will conclude the series Sunday at 1 p.m.