February 15, 2010

Brandeis baseball drops season opener at Texas Lutheran despite 4-hit game by Posch

SEGUIN, Texas -- The Brandeis University baseball team opened its season in February for the second-straight year, making a four-game road trip to southwestern Texas. The Judges faced Texas Lutheran University in their 2010 debut, falling to the Bulldogs by a 12-3 margin, despite a terrific performance by senior catcher Artie Posch (Hopedale, Mass./Hopedale).

Posch reached base with hits in all four at-bats, going 4-for-4 with a double two RBI and a run scored. His two-bagger in the seventh inning appeared to leave the ballpark after hitting the top of the fence, but was ruled a double. Posch gave the Judges a 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning when he delivered a two-out RBI single, plating junior 3B Tony Deshler (Pepperell, Mass./Lawrence Acad.), who had doubled with one away.

Brandeis senior Drew Brzozowski (Concord, Mass./Concord-Carlisle) cruised through the first three innings. He faced the minimum the first time through the order, allowing just one walk and getting a 6-4-3 double play to the next batter. Unfortunately, he ran into trouble the second time around. The first two batters reached in the fourth, and senior RF Ryan Nokelby (Santa Fe, Texas/Santa Fe) doubled them home to give the Bulldogs a 2-1 lead. TLU rookie DH Isaac Tijerina (Castroville, Texas/Medina Valley) drove Nokelby home two batters later and scored later in the frame to give the hosts a 4-1 lead they would not relinquish.

Texas Lutheran scored one more run in the fifth and posted another four spot in the sixth to put the game away. Posch added an RBI double in the seventh and scored on the first collegiate hit and run batted in for rookie CF Nick Cortese (Guyanbo, P.R./Baldwin School of Puerto Rico). The hosts answered with three runs in the bottom of the eighth, including a two-run home run by Nokelsby, who finished the day going 3-for-5 with two runs scored and six RBI, a double and a homer. Sophomore 3B Brian Wheaton (Ashburn, Va./Stone Bridge) also had a fine performance for TLU, going 3-for-4 with three runs scored, two triples and an RBI.

Brzozowski suffered the loss despite striking out six in 5.1 innings, giving up eight earned runs on eight hits. Senior Travis Staggs (San Antonio, Texas/Western Texas JC) earned the win for the Bulldogs with five innings of four-hit ball, striking out three and walking one.

Brandeis continues its four-game Texas swing tomorrow evening at 8 p.m. Eastern at Trinity University.

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