By JOE SHIVAK
Murfreesboro, TN ( 2/17)………..The Blue Raiders opened the 2012 baseball season with a loss to the Kansas Jayhawks, 7-3. Kansas scored three runs in the 6th inning on a double by Alex DeLeon. The Jayhawks would lead 7-3 as the hit cleared the bases as Middle Tennessee failed to score after the 2nd inning in front of a crowd of 607 fans.
The Blue Raider’s Justin Guidry hit into a double play ending the first inning. Ryan Ford had walked and then made it to second base, but was a victim of Guidry’s fly ball.
Kansas scored in the second inning on a long fly ball into the right corner at the 330 foot mark giving him a triple and scoring Jake Marasco who had earned a walk.
Johnny Thomas hit a three run home run over the wall at the 365 foot mark in the second inning giving Middle Tennessee a 3-1 lead.
Kansas scored on a fly ball over the shortstop bringing Kevin Kuntz across the plate. They followed that up when Michael Suiter hit a ground ball past the shortstop. The score is tied 3-3 as the clouds begin to move in over the stadium with the temperature hovering at 56 degrees.
There was no scoring for Middle Tennessee in the third despite a base hit to center field by Guidry .
Middle Tennessee opened the 4th inning with Nick Montgomery on the mound. He gives up a two base hit by Kuntz which scores Dreiling giving Kansas a 4-3 lead. There were five batters up , two of which were left stranded on base.
After facing five batters in the bottom of the 6th inning, Kansas brought Jordan Luvisi in to pitch. Two Middle batters were left stranded on the bases, as the Kansas left fielder dropped a fly ball hit directly to him for an error.
Kooper Kessler came in at the top of the 9th inning to pitch for the Blue Raiders. Kansas was three up and three down to end their scoreless inning.
The Blue Raiders started the final inning with a base hit by Ryan Stephens Dain McNabb stuck out and LaRue flied out to left field. Stephens would take second base on a passed ball. The inning and game would end on a fly ball out.
Kansas would win the game with 7 home runs on 10 hits and had 1 error. The Blue Raiders got 3 runs on 5 hits and committed 2 errors.
Middle Tennessee gets one night rest, as they play Saint Louis on Saturday at 12:00 noon before returning for their third game in three days against Evansville.