May 21, 1998
CLEMSON, S.C. – (AP) Eric Munson hit a two-run homer in the fifth inning helping Southern California secure a 10-6 win over Fordham on Thursday in the opening game of the NCAA Tournament’s East Regional.
Munson also doubled twice and finished with three RBIs.
Steve Immel (4-0) allowed two runs over 3 1/3 innings to earn the victory, while Colin Young (5-1) suffered the loss for the Rams (27-19).
Coach Mike Gillespie gambled by saving ace starter Seth Etherton for later in the tournament and it nearly cost the Trojans (41-15). Fordham’s Young ripped a two-run double in the third inning and scored on Bob Sprague’s single as the Rams chased Rik Currier and opened up a 4-0 lead.
But mistakes in the field doomed the Rams. Leading 4-1 in the fourth, Fordham gave up a double when three fielders lost Munson’s routine pop-up in the sun for a double.
Another fielding gaffe gave USC (41-15) a single, and the Rams missed on a chance to get out of the inning when Young botched a rundown with an errant throw. Given a second chance, the Trojans capitalized with a two-run single by Brad Ticehurst to cut the deficit to 4-3.
Rob Gorr smashed an RBI triple and scored to tie the game at 5-5 in the fifth before Munson’s homer gave USC the lead for good.
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