April 1, 2005
Fresno, Calif. - In a case of unlucky sevens, the Rice Owls scored seven runs in the seventh inning against Fresno State on Friday Night to pick up an 8-2 win. Fresno State starter Matt Garza pitched effectively for six innings, allowing just one run, but was matched by Rice's Joe Geer, who struck out 11 in a complete game victory.
The Bulldogs started out the game on the right foot again, however. Geer retired the first two Bulldogs he faced, but walked Nick Moresi, and freshman Beau Mills made him pay by hammering a two-run homer to right field, his tenth of the year.
That lead would be enough for the Bulldogs for a while, as the team continued to get the big outs, despite Rice keeping men on base. During the first six innings, the Owls left 12 men on base, and only scored one run. That run came in the fourth, as Rice manufactured a run off of a single, a fielders choice, an error, and an RBI single from Tyler Henley.
The game broke open in an error-plagued seventh inning however. Fresno State had kept a slim 2-1 lead to that point, but reliever Eddie Romero hit and walked the first two batters of the inning, and was replaced by Ryan Penn, who would be hurt by the defense. A hard grounder was bobbled by Beau Mills, which scored one run, and a bunt single loaded the bases for Rice. Penn got Rice's Friday to strikeout, but two straight errors from shortstop Christian Vitters allowed three more runs to cross the plate, and a single and a double from Adam Rodgers and Lance Pendleton brought across three more in the inning.
Fresno State's Brandon Burke closed out the game effectively for the Bulldogs, and Joe Geer finished out the game for Rice, ending the game having given up 6 hits, two runs, two walks and striking out 11 to get the win. Romero took the loss for Fresno State, his third of the season.
The series continues tomorrow, where Rice's Eddie Degerman heads to the hill against Fresno State right-hander Michael Cooper. First pitch is scheduled for 6:35 at Beiden Field.
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