Huskies Rally to Beat USF

The Connecticut baseball team has rediscovered that old tournament magic at the Big East championship in Clearwater, Fla., this week.

Senior designated hitter Stanley Paul stroked a leadoff double in the bottom of the ninth and scored on a bases-loaded wild pitch as the Huskies came back from a 7-0 deficit to defeat USF 8-7 Thursday night in a winner's bracket game.

Coming off a 3-2 victory over top-seeded Louisville on Wednesday, UConn has advanced to the semifinals and will have Friday off. UConn, needing to win one of two games Saturday to advance to Sunday's championship game, will play the winner of Friday's elimination game between USF and Rutgers on Saturday.

Here's the quick game story from UConn sports information:

CLEARWATER, Fla. (May 23, 2013) – Senior designed hitter Stanley Paul (Stamford, Conn.) scored the winning run in the bottom of the ninth inning on a wild pitch as the University of Connecticut baseball team came back from a 7-0 deficit and defeated USF in a winners' bracket game of the BIG EAST tournament on Thursday night.

Connecticut, the No. 8 seed in the event, has now beaten top-seed Louisville and the No. 4 seed Bulls to start the tournament. The Huskies will have the day off on Friday and return to action on Saturday at 1:00 p.m. (ESPN3,, WHUS-91.7 FM) against the winner of the USF-Rutgers elimination game that will be played on Friday. The Huskies will need to win one of two games on Saturday to advance to Sunday's championship game. Connecticut improves to 32-26 on the year while the Bulls are 36-21.

The Huskies spotted USF a 7-0 lead as the Bulls scored single runs in the first and second inning and exploded for four in the fourth and another in the fifth. The rest of the scoring for the game came from the Huskies with a six-run fifth inning and single runs in the eighth and ninth.

In the ninth with the game tied at 7-7, Paul reached second on a USF outfield error and then advanced to third on a one-out wild pitch. USF then intentionally walked senior center fielder Billy Ferriter (Nashua, N.H.) and senior second baseman LJ Mazzilli to load the bases. With freshman third baseman Vinny Siena (Woodbridge, N.J.) at the plate, USF pitcher Jordan Strittmatter gave up the winning run on the wild pitch.

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