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Baseball sweeps Toledo, falls to Indiana Hoosiers
By Annie Moore
Louisville baseball recorded yet another 2-1 weekend as Mother Nature did a little schedule re-arranging. The Cards couldn’t close the sweep, as it faced Toledo on Friday winning 6-2, and Indiana and Toledo again on Saturday in a double-header. Louisville beat Toledo 8-2 in game two, but dropped the first game against Indiana 6-2.
Junior left-hander Joe Filomino had his best career start on Friday, with five strikeouts in six innings, allowing only two-unearned runs. Filomino’s outing was his longest of his career, and his first win of 2014.
The Rockets and the Cards exchanged runs for the first few frames on Friday, but Toledo struck first, putting up a run in the first after Tyler Grogg reached on an error by Louisville second baseman Grant Kay. In the bottom of the frame, designated hitter Nick Solak was the first man up. Solak knocked a double to left center, followed by a groundout from right-fielder Cole Sturgeon, which advanced Solak to third. Kay singled to right field and drove in Solak for the run.
Again in the second, the Rockets looked to Grogg. With two outs, and two strikes, Grogg singled to rightfield, advanced on a throwing error by Sturgeon, and advanced to third and shortstop Deion Tansel singled up the middle to bring Grogg home. But that run would mark the end of the Rockets offense for the day.
The Cards would put up four more runs, thanks in part to a big offensive performance from senior left-fielder Jeff Gardner. Gardner hit his second homerun of the season, and drove in three runs to lead Louisville.
The impending winter weather caused the weekend schedule to be re-arranged, which gave the Cardinals a double-header on Saturday.
The first game was against the No. 17 Indiana Hoosiers. Indiana fans were out in full force as the Cardinals dropped the first meeting against Indiana. The teams will face off two more times during the regular season.
The first matchup didn’t go the Cardinals direction, as the Hoosiers got up early, scoring four runs in the first three innings. The Cardinals tried to play catch up, and had a bases loaded opportunity in the bottom of the ninth, but failed to capitalize.
Cardinal right-hander Kyle Funkhouser got his first loss of the season and fell to 1-1 on the season. Funkhouser threw six and two-thirds innings and allowed four earned runs on eight hits with just two strikeouts.
Louisville showed resilience, winning its second game of the double-header and completing the two-game sweep of Toledo. Coach Dan McDonnell says he’s happy with the strength the team showed in coming back and getting the win after a tough loss to IU.
“Not everyone’s going to feel good. Nine guys in the lineup, you play eighteen frames of baseball, some guys are locked in and other guys are fighting,” McDonnell said. “They have to learn how to help the team win, even when you don’t have your swing. We learned a lot from ourselves today. We fought through and won the second game, which was a challenge.”
The Cards face another challenge as Miami of Ohio comes to town for a three-game series next weekend. The first game is Friday at 3 p.m. at Jim Patterson Stadium.