Baseball looks for revenge


By Brian Earle

Baseball will look to get its revenge against UW-Milwaukee at 3:05 p.m. today at Ralph McKinzie Field after coming up short in their first meeting earlier this season, 3-2.

In the loss, the Huskies (10-28-1) were done in by their own mistakes on the mound and in the field. In the top of the first inning, starting pitcher Ryan Olson hit the Panthers’ (13-16) leadoff man, Derek Peake, and later in the inning third baseman Carl Russell committed a fielding error, allowing Peake to score.

The Panthers added two runs in the top of the eighth inning to take a 3-1 lead while the Huskies added one in the bottom of the frame but could not complete the rally.

Head coach Ed Mathey was impressed with the Panthers’ starting pitcher, Jake Tuttle, who pitched five innings while giving up just one earned run and scattering seven hits. At this point, Mathey is unsure as to who the Panthers will have starting.

“I thought their pitcher did a better job against us than we anticipated,” Mathey said. “You have to tip your hat. He had a good outing. At the time we weren’t hitting very well, and that might have had something to do with it, but he was throwing strikes.”

Olson pitched well enough to win the game as he threw seven strong innings, giving up one run, which was unearned, while allowing five hits with four strikeouts.

This time around the Huskies will turn to pitcher Jordan Ruckman to start on the mound. Ruckman has started eight games this season and made 11 appearances but has not tallied a win. He’s tossed 36.1 innings and given up 41 runs, 33 of them earned.

After pitcher Alex Klonowski threw another complete game on Sunday, Mathey also wants to get his bullpen some work against the Panthers.

“It’s a Wednesday game before a Friday, Saturday, Sunday series, and he’s one of our guys out of the bullpen, so we’re going to keep a close eye on the number of pitches that he throws,” Mathey said. “Then beyond that there’s a couple other guys that we feel like we want to get in to get ready for the weekend: TJ Schrader, I’d like to see Dirk Ormsby on the mound, Andrew Frankenreider, Ben Neumann and then I’d like to see Olson throw again … . Getting those guys in some game action will be important to set up the weekend.”

The two teams come into this matchup playing at opposite ends of the spectrum. The Panthers have won three of their last four games while the Huskies ended their five-game losing streak with a win over Central Michigan on Sunday.

Infielder Justin Fletcher continues to lead the Huskies in most offensive categories with a batting average of .303 on 46 hits. He has tallied a team-high six doubles and four triples while scoring 23 runs.

The Huskies will need to worry about Panthers outfielder Ryan Solberg. He leads the team with a .337 batting average while recording 35 hits and 21 RBIs on four home runs.