SAN DIEGO - The Billikens defeated Michigan, 9-5, but fell to San Diego 11-3 in two games in San Diego, Calif. today. With the split, Saint Louis is now 10-5 on the year. Junior southpaw Damian Rivera picked up the win against Michigan for his first victory of the year. Junior Clay Smith (2-2) was tagged with the loss in game two, despite striking out five batters in four innings.
Saint Louis scored their first run of game one when Grant Nelson made the most out of a base running error. With runners at first and third, Nelson was picked off at first. Nelson delayed the play long enough to allow Alex Kelly to score from third.
In the second, Mike Levine ripped an RBI single and Danny Brennan scored on an error to bring the Billiken run total to three. The Wolverines answered in the third with two runs of their own to bring the tally to 3-2 through three innings.
The Bills pulled away in the fifth. C.J. Rose gathered an RBI on a double to left center. He scored on a Brennan single. Brennan later scored on an Alec Solé bunt single. Michigan again responded with two runs of its own to bring the score to 6-4.
Saint Louis put three more runs on the board in the sixth on a Rose three-run home run. That shot gave Rose four RBIs on the day, the second time he has achieved the feat this season.
Michigan could only manage one more run in the contest and SLU emerged with a 9-5 win. The victory gives Saint Louis its second win over the Wolverines, winning the season series two games to one.
In game two, the Toreros of San Diego sought to even the score after SLU's victory last night. The Bills opened up the scoring in the first when Braxton Martinez reached on a fielder's choice, but the throw from the USD second basemen was off-line, allowing Jordan Hammerman to score. In the bottom of the frame, the Toreros added two runs of their own to take an early lead.
Despite a San Diego run in the second, the Billikens came out firing in the third inning. Both Nelson and Rose hit RBI singles to tie the ballgame at three heading to the bottom of the inning.
From the bottom of the third inning to the end of the game, it was all USD. The Toreros scored eight unanswered runs in the remaining six innings. The final damage was 11-3 in favor of San Diego.
On the day, Levine and Nelson were tough outs at the plate. Levine was four-for-eight with a walk and an RBI. Nelson was even better, going three-for-five with a double, four walks, two runs and an RBI.
The Billikens have one more game in San Diego, an 11:00 a.m. contest against Holy Cross tomorrow. The Bills return home on March 12 for a mid-week two-game series against Western Illinois.