In the longest outing by an SIU reliever in 2013, Matt Murphy threw 3.2 scoreless innings.
April 20, 2013
OMAHA, Neb. – For the second day in a row, Southern Illinois could not overcome an early deficit as they lost 5-3 to Creighton Saturday afternoon at TD Ameritrade Park. With the loss, the Salukis (18-20, 2-9 MVC) have now dropped their first four conference series of the year.
Trailing 5-3 in the ninth, SIU got the tying run into scoring position with the heart of the order due up but could not get a run home. Ryan Rosthenhausler and Jake Welch led off the inning with a walk and a single, respectively.
At that point, Creighton turned to reliever Bryan Sova to close the game. Rennie Troggio sacrificed Welch to second base. Matt Jones then flew out to right-center field, but Rosthenhausler did not tag up. After Austin Montgomery drew an intentional walk to load the bases, Ryan Casillas lined out to right field to end the game.
“We had our three, four, five hitters coming up with an opportunity to tie the game,” SIU Coach Ken Henderson said. “You have to feel pretty good about that, but we didn’t get the key hit again today.”
Southern Illinois stranded 11 runners in the game. Eight of those runners were left in scoring position.
“We had ample opportunities in the ballgame to score runs,” Henderson said, “and we didn’t have good ABs to get those runs in.”
SIU starter Derek Fogel departed the game with one out in the fifth inning and the Salukis trailing 5-2. He allowed three straight singles to start the fifth and left with the bases loaded and one run already across in the inning, but reliever Matt Murphy induced a 1-2-3 double play to end the inning with no further damage. Murphy did not allow a run in three and two-thirds of an inning to keep SIU within striking distance.
“He was okay once he settled in,” Henderson said “Both times we scored, he went back out and gave up runs. That’s when you need zeros, but after a rocky start, I feel like he kept us in the game.”
Creighton starter Nick Musec allowed two runs in five and a third innings of work to earn his first win of the season after starting the year 0-4. Only one of SIU’s runs against Musec was earned.
After SIU scored one run in the first inning but left the bases loaded, Creighton took a 3-1 lead in the bottom of the first inning. After two singles and a walk, Reagan Fowler drew a bases loaded walk to tie the game at 1-1. Kevin Lamb followed with a two-run single to extend the lead to 3-1. All three of the runs scored with two outs.
SIU cut the deficit to 5-3 in the top of the seventh when Jake Welch reached on a two-base throwing error and scored on Matt Jones’ single up the middle.
The Salukis will try to avoid the sweep in Sunday's 4 p.m. finale, which will be televised on ESPNU.
“We need to play well and try to find a way to come out of here with a win,” Henderson said. “We’ve been in both games and had opportunities to win both games. We need to figure out a way to get it done.”