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March 25, 2009

USI loses slugfest to Saint Joseph's, 16-10

Box Score: Saint Joseph's 16, #22 Southern Indiana 10

RENSSELAER, Ind. The 22nd ranked University of Southern Indiana baseball team started its road swing by dropping a 16-10 non-conference slugfest at Saint Joseph's College Wednesday afternoon in Rensselaer, Indiana. USI falls to 17-7 overall, while Saint Joseph's rises to 15-11.

The afternoon started well for the Screaming Eagles as they jumped out to a 6-0 lead in the top of the first and a 9-2 lead after an inning-and-a-half. The USI six-run barrage in the first inning was led by a three-run home run by senior Chad Bruce (Fountaintown, Indiana) and a two-run shot by junior third baseman Tyler Choate (Carmi, Illinois) in the first inning. The second inning rally was highlighted by a two-run blast off the bat of senior designated hitter Alex Thieroff (Greenfield, Indiana).

Thieroff's home run was his team-best fifth of the season, while Bruce's shot was his first of the year and Choate's long-ball was his second of the campaign.

The Pumas began to chip away at the Eagles advantage, knocking out USI senior right-handed starter Michael Dewig (Haubstadt, Indiana) in the second inning. Saint Joseph's cut the lead to 9-6 in the second inning and scored five times in the sixth to take its first lead of the game, 11-10.

In the bottom of the eighth, Saint Joseph's added five insurance runs for the final score of 16-10.

USI sophomore right-hander Cody Brandenstein (Evansville, Indiana) took the loss for the Eagles, allowing five earned runs in 1.1 innings of work. Brandenstein (0-1) was preceded to the mound by Dewig, who allowed five runs, three earned, in 1.1 innings; and junior right-hander Trevor Leach (Danville, Indiana), who gave up six runs, one earned, in 4.2 frames.

The Eagles continue the road swing with a four-game series against the University of Missouri-St. Louis Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. The USI-UMSL series will be played at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville's Roy Lee Field at the Simmons-Cooper Complex.

USI also has added a sixth contest to the road trip, scheduling a visit to Oakland City University on March 31 at 2 p.m. The USI-OCU match-up was moved up from April 24.

Ray Simmons, USI Sports Information

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