LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Brian Harris’ bases loaded walk in the ninth tied the game at 3-3 and Joe Loftus’ grounder in the 10th gave Vanderbilt a 4-3 win over Louisville Wednesday night at Patterson Stadium.
The Commodores snapped a four-game losing streak to move to 24-17 overall, while the Cardinals four-game winning streak was snapped as they fell to 28-11 on the season.
The win was the Commodores first when trailing after eight innings as they were 0-13 in such situations entering tonight’s game.
After tying the game on a bases loaded walk in the ninth Curt Casali led off the 10th with a double to right center and then moved to third on a single to right by Aaron Westlake. Joe Loftus then grounded into a double play to short that scored Casali with the winning run.
Russell Brewer (1-2), who came on in relief in the ninth, recorded the first two outs in the 10th before Mike Minor came out of the pen to record the final out for his first save of the year.
“The last four games have been difficult and we have had a hard time,” said Vanderbilt head coach Tim Corbin. “To win a game like this is emotional and you feel like the kids deserve some sort of luck at some point. We pitched well enough to stay in the game and we hit well at the end. To put up a run in the ninth and the tenth is just what we needed. It’s a big win for the kids.”
Phil Wunderlich staked the Cardinals to a 1-0 lead in the first with a solo homer to right, his 10th round tripper of the year. UL added another run on a sacrifice fly RBI by John Dao.
The Commodores got on the board in the third when Jordan Wormsley singled, moved to second on a groundout and scored on a RBI double by Brian Harris.
VU tied the game in the fifth on a RBI groundout by Harris. Jason Esposito singled, moved to second on a bunt by Jordan Wormsley and to third on a single by Drew Fann. Harris then grounded to second to bring in Esposito to tie the game.
Chris Dominguez’ solo homer in the seventh inning put the Cardinals up 3-2. It was his 11th homer of the year, coming off of reliever Chase Reid.
The Commodores tied the game up in the top of the ninth when Harris drew a bases loaded walk on a full count with the bases loaded. Joe Loftus singled to lead off the inning off of Louisville closer Tony Zych. Riley Reynolds hit a sacrifice bunt to advance Loftus into scoring position. Zych uncorked a wild pitch that allowed Loftus to go to third and walked Jason Esposito. Pinch hitter Jonathan White walked to load the bases and pinch hitter Richie Goodenow struck out to put the Dores down to their final out. Harris battled off several pitches before drawing the walk on a 3-2 pitch that was low to tie the game at 3-3.
Brewer pitched 1.2 innings of hitless, scoreless relief with three strikeouts in the win. Aaron Westlake was the lone Commodores with two hits, while Harris led the team with three of the four runs batted in.
The Commodores will be back in Southeastern Conference action this weekend as Mississippi State comes in for a three-game set. The first game is set for 6 p.m. on Friday, with a 1 p.m. start on Saturday and a 1 p.m. first pitch on Sunday.