TAMPA — University of Central Florida’s Eric Skoglund and University of South Florida’s Jimmey Herget locked up in a classic pitchers duel at USF Baseball Stadium, in American Conference action, and at the end of the night Skoglund and the Knights were winners 2-0. UCF improved to (19-12, 7-0) and USF fell to (17-13, 4-3).
Skoglund tossed eight innings of shutout baseball scattering five hits, striking out eight. He walked two and made 102 pitches. Zach Rodgers picked up the save for UCF.
Herget pitched 8 2/3 innings allowing two runs on five hits. He struck out nine and walked two and threw 126 pitches.
UCF got on the board in the first. A one out walk and a stolen base by Derrick Salberg in the set up a RBI opportunity for James Vasquez who delivered with solid single to left center giving the Knights a 1-0 lead.
USF was not without opportunities to tie the game.
The Bulls loaded the bases in the fifth with one out, but Skoglund got Austin Lueck to pop out to first and Kyle Teaf was the third out attempting a bunt.
The Bulls got two runners in scoring position in the seventh after Vincent Miniet walked and Lueck doubled to deep left, and Skoglund forced a ground ball to shortstop ending the threat.
The Knights tacked on the all important insurance run in the ninth on a RBI single by Kam Gellinger who lead off the inning with a single and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Sam Tolleson.
“Jimmy is one of the best in the country. He out pitched their guy. They got hits when they needed it and we didn’t. Somebody has to step up and get a base hit in crucial situations, ” said head coach Lelo Prado. “You got to get hits when they count,” Prado added
The two teams square off again tomorrow withe the first pitch scheduled for 6 PM.