May 23, 2013; Clearwater, FL, USA; Louisville Cardinals starting pitcher Chad Green (24) reacts in the dugout after he pitched the first inning against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights during the Big East baseball championship at Bright House Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Is This Real Life? Louisville Baseball Drops Two Straight in Conference Tourney

May 23, 2013; Clearwater, FL, USA; Louisville Cardinals pitcher Kyle McGrath (45) throws a pitch during the third inning against the Rutgers Scarlet Knights during the Big East baseball championship at Bright House Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Well there it is.  Louisville has been eliminated from the Big East Baseball Tourney.  Two days and two highly unpredictable losses now have the Cards’ hope for a national seed in jeopardy.

It all started last night.  The Cards were the one seed in the tournament, poised to make a huge run after winning 16 straight and winning the Big East Regular Season Title.  They played UConn, a 31-26 (at the time) team that they swept 3-0 in the regular season.  It looked to be a given that UofL was going to pull out a win.  Instead, this game was surprisingly close throughout, and wound up being a tie game at 2-2 in the 12th inning.  What happened?  UConn’s Billy Ferriter hit an RBI single and won the game for the Huskies.  I could not have been more shocked than I was when I heard this news.  I just couldn’t believe it.  I did have to reassure myself though that every team has their bad days and that Louisville still had one more game to turn it around.

But they didn’t.

Louisville was playing Rutgers today in an elimination game, against a Scarlet Knights team that seemed to have UofL’s number this year (well, that’s from what conclusions you can make from a 3-game series).  Rutgers ran all over Louisville today.  And Louisville was just completely out of it.  They couldn’t seem to do anything all game and Rutgers took advantage, scoring run after run after run, especially in the fifth inning, which was the fatal blow to Louisville’s tournament run.

In all, Louisville has got to regroup and refocus.  Louisville cannot possibly be mentally ok after losing two straight against two not-so-great teams.  Louisville has beaten good teams, and they will face good teams in the NCAAs, especially now that the possibility is there that Louisville may not be hosting a regional.  For Louisville’s sake, they’d better hope some other teams have slip-ups like theirs and that they can overcome their own faults.  It’s time to focus on the NCAAs now.  Nothing more can be done about the Big East Tournament.  It’s over (literally).  Time to look ahead.  Go Cards.

 

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