TheCrunchZone.com’s William Caudill was on hand at Louisville Slugger Field to snap photos of UofL’s comeback win over Northern Kentucky.
Drew Ellis connected for a pair of home runs for the second time in less than a week and Zeke Pinkham hit his first career long ball in the No. 2 Louisville baseball team’s 6-4 victory against Northern Kentucky on Wednesday night at Louisville Slugger Field.
Five days after hitting two home runs against Duke, Ellis achieved the feat again delivering a solo home run in the fourth inning and a two-run shot in the fifth inning for the Cardinals (35-6), who overcame a four-deficit for their fourth straight win. Ellis had three RBI and was 2-for-4 at the plate raising his batting average to .386 overall to go with a team-leading 12 home runs and 41 RBI. Ellis, who also homered in Tuesday’s win at EKU, has connected for seven home runs in his last 25 at-bats over seven games.
Pinkham drove in a career best three RBI and matched a career high for hits in finishing 2-for-4 overall, highlighted by his two-run homer in the fourth inning. Louisville finished with three home runs on Wednesday after hitting a season-high six long balls in Tuesday’s victory at Eastern Kentucky. The Cardinals moved to 2-0 all-time at Louisville Slugger Field, home ballpark of the Louisville Bats and site of next month’s ACC Championship. Wednesday’s game marked Louisville’s first appearance at the ballpark since earning a 7-5 win against Kentucky in 2003.
Sophomore Adam Wolf earned the win for the Cardinals and moved to 6-0 on the season after the lefthander finished with three strikeouts in 2.1 innings of scoreless relief. Wolf has earned a victory in six of his last seven outings, including each of the last four. Sophomore righthander Sam Bordner had three strikeouts in two innings of perfect relief to extend his career-best season-opening scoreless streak to 24.2 innings. Junior righty Lincoln Henzman twirled a perfect ninth inning to register his 13th save of the season and move into a tie fourth on Louisville’s single season leaderboard matching the total achieved by Tony Zych in 2011.
Northern Kentucky (15-25) opened the scoring on Wednesday when T.J. Alas connected on the first pitch from righty Bryan Hoeing for a first inning solo home run to left center. The Norse added to the lead in the second inning when Chad Roberts scored from third on passed ball for the 2-0 lead.
NKU doubled its lead with two runs in the third inning for a 4-0 advantage. Trey Ganns scored the first run on a RBI double to right center by Roberts, who was driven home later in the inning on a RBI single up the middle by Mike Moffatt.
Louisville started its comeback when Ellis delivered the first of his two home runs sending a solo shot over the left field wall in the fourth inning. Following a two-out walk to Devin Mann, Pinkham turned on a 1-2 pitch from Seth Rosenberg sending it down the right field line and just inside the foul pole to cut the deficit to 4-3.
The Cardinals moved ahead for good in the fifth inning on the two-run homer from Ellis, his 15th career blast. Josh Stowers led off the fifth with a double to right center and later scored when Ellis crushed a 2-2 pitch from Charlie Jerger sending it into the left field seats for the 5-4 lead.
Louisville added an insurance run in the eighth inning on a RBI single from Pinkham. Colin Lyman led off the inning with a single through the right side, swiped second for his 10th stolen base of the season and moved to third on a sacrifice bunt from Mann before scoring when Pinkham singled up the middle.
Up next, No. 2 Louisville hosts Toledo for a three-game series at Jim Patterson Stadium starting Friday at 6 p.m., ET. The Cardinals and Rockets are also slated for Saturday at 1 p.m., and Sunday at 1 p.m., and admission is free throughout the weekend.