The Louisville Cardinal

Baseball tops Pitt behind Brendan McKay’s career day

Junior Brendan McKay threw a career-high 15 strikeouts.

By Micah Brown–

Baseball (13-0, 1-0) began ACC play with a 3-0 victory over Pittsburgh (7-5, 0-1), remaining one of two undefeated teams in Division I baseball.

Junior Brendan McKay threw a career-high 15 strikeouts while only allowing two hits and one walk. McKay lowered his season ERA from 0.82 to 0.50.

“I had no idea (about the career-high strikes),” McKay said. “You just get in that zone where you’re not worried about anything but just putting up outs for your team.”

Offensively, McKay drove in one of Louisville’s three runs with a sacrifice fly in the first inning. Junior Drew Ellis followed suit with a RBI single, driving in sophomore Devin Mann to put the Cards up 2-0. Ellis then doubled in the third inning, being brought home by a fake-bunt hit by senior Collin Lyman.

Pittsburgh’s pitching settled down after the third inning, allowing only two hits and holding the Cards scoreless for the rest of the game.

“(They had) really good pitching. This is game one of an ACC and they’re throwing their Friday night guy with a fresh bullpen,” coach Dan McDonnell said. “We left a lot of runners on base but you tip your hat. That’s what good pitchers do.”

For the Panthers, offense was hard to come by, as they finished with no runs, two hits and only had runners in scoring position twice.

Junior Lincoln Henzman relieved McKay and threw two hitless innings with three strikeouts and one walk. Henzman and McKay combined to record 18 of the possible 27 outs via strikeout.

Louisville looks to improve their undefeated record as well as take the second game of the series on March 11 at 1 p.m.

Photos by Dalton Ray / The Louisville Cardinal