Curtis' two-hit shutout gives Raiders win over FIU
Freshman Jarreau plates three hits and two runs in winMay 9, 2014 · @MTAthletics
MIAMI - Left-hander Zac Curtis hurled Middle Tennessee's first two-hitter in five years in the Blue Raiders' 7-0 shutout of FIU on Friday evening.
Curtis (7-3) worked an effective game fanning eight in his fifth complete game of the year. Despite walking four, he worked out of those jams to hold the Panthers at bay. Friday's outing by Curtis marked the 27th time a Blue Raider pitched a two-hit contest. It was the first since Kenneth Roberts held Troy to a pair of hits in an 8-1 victory on May 2, 2009.
The Hendersonville native upped his nation-leading strikeout total to 118, which ranks fourth all-time at Middle Tennessee in a single-season. It was also Curtis' second shutout this year, matching a strong outing against Old Dominion two weeks ago.
The Blue Raiders (25-24, 13-12 Conference USA) kept pace for a quest to clinch a berth in the C-USA Championship. MT posted seven runs on 11 hits. The Panthers (34-11, 14-11 C-USA) mustered two hits with two errors and now are just one game up on Middle Tennessee.
Freshman Brad Jarreau had a career performance with a perfect 3-for-3 game, scoring two runs and a bringing home a RBI. Michael Adkins had a two-hit affair with two RBI, a walk and a run scored. Senior Hank LaRue tallied two hits and posted two runs. Jared Allen, Austin Bryant and Dustin Delgado all collected RBIs in the contest.
Senior Ryan Stephens posted a hit and stole a base in a historical night. The Murfreesboro native tied Phillip Edwards for the school record with 174 consecutive games played.
Middle Tennessee struck first in the third inning. LaRue and Ingold opened the stanza with two consecutive hits. Jarreau's sac bunt moved the runners to scoring position. Delgado's sacrifice fly to center field scored LaRue, giving MT the first run of the game.
FIU ace Mike Franco exited early in the fourth inning. Adkins and LaRue scored the Raiders' next two runs off a Jarreau double to right field. The freshman added the Raiders fourth run of the day thanks to a Bryant left field double.
In the ninth, Allen drew a bases-loaded walk to score Jarreau for the second time of the game. Adkins belted a two-run single to left field, giving Middle Tennessee a seven run lead.
Franco (8-3) was handed his third loss of the year, allowing two earned runs on two hits in four innings. Williams Durruthy and Jason Morozowski gave up the next five runs.
Middle Tennessee could clinch a much-needed series victory on Saturday. Right-hander Paul Mittura (3-3, 4.24 ERA) faces FIU freshman Cody Crouse (4-2, 1.55 ERA) in a 3 p.m. CT tilt. Fans can listen to the game on WMOT 89.5 FM and watch online at GoBlueRaiders.com.
NOTES: CF Ryan Stephens tied Phillip Edwards for the school-record with 174 consecutive starts ... Curtis held a one hitter until giving up a single in the seventh inning ... Brad Jarreau had a career-best three hits in Friday's contest ... Zac Curtis moved into a tie for sixth nationally with his fifth complete game ... Curtis now has 118 career strikeouts ... He recorded the 27th two-hitter in program history, becoming the first since Kenneth Roberts held an opponent to two hits in 2009.
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