Defending National Champions Hand Tampa Early NCAA ExitMay 18, 2012
TAMPA, Fla. – The University of Tampa (38-10) baseball team saw its season come to an end as the University of West Florida (35-18) defeated the Spartans by a 7-4 score in day two of the 2012 NCAA Division II Baseball South Regional.
The host Spartans faced an early 4-0 deficit as the Argonauts crossed three first-inning runs and one in the second. UWF extended its advantage to 7-0 with three in the top of the fourth.
Tampa responded with three runs of its own in the bottom of the fourth frame. Andrew Jones would score the first UT run of the game following a lead-off double as the other two runs came on a two-run double by Heath Pritchard.
The only other run the Spartans were able to score came on a solo home run by Eric Grabe in the seventh inning. The round-tripper went down as the first long-ball of the regional, coming in the sixth game of competition.
Grabe and Pritchard both had two hits to lead Tampa at the plate.
Sunshine State Conference and Daktronics South Region Pitcher of the Year Sean Bierman (8-3) started for the Spartans, taking the loss following 4.0 innings of work. Justin Leith entered in relief as the senior lefty threw 5.0 scoreless innings with three strikeouts.
Tampa’s season comes to an end after winning the program’s 14th SSC championship and being ranked in the national top-five for the entire regular season.