Baseball: Nola, Sciambra lead LSU past Terps, 1-0 - Sports

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Baseball: Nola, Sciambra lead LSU past Terps, 1-0

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  • Baseball v. Maryland 2/15/13

    LSU sophomore outfielder Chris Sciambra (5) prepares to slide into third base Friday Feb. 15, 2013 during the Tigers' 1-0 shutout against Maryland in Alex Box Stadium.

Posted: Friday, February 15, 2013 10:22 pm

Sophomore righty Aaron Nola blazed through 6 2/3 scoreless innings, while fellow classmate Chris Sciambra had a career high four hits to lead No. 10 LSU past Maryland on opening night in Alex Box Stadium, 1-0.

Nola battled tightly with Terrapin southpaw starter Jimmy Reed, scattering two hits while striking out nine and allowing only three Maryland baserunners all evening to ensure the Tiger victory.

"I had all my pitches working tonight," Nola said. "I was throwing quality strikes with my fastball and my changeup felt good coming out of my hand."

Sciambra, making his first appearance since a neck injury sidelined him for the latter half of last season, battled through a two-strike count in three of his four at-bats for base hits.

His bat also sparked the only scoring of the contest in the third inning as the Catholic High product laced a one-out double down the third base line and later scored on freshman shortstop Alex Bregman's first career hit.

"[With] two strikes I really try to lock in even more," Sciambra said. "My job as the leadoff guy is to see a lot of pitches and work the pitcher and try to give our guys any advantage."

With Nola on a strict 85-pitch limit, LSU coach Paul Mainieri turned to senior right-hander Joey Bourgeois in the seventh, who was perfect through an inning before giving way to closer and classmate Chris Cotton.

Cotton cruised into the ninth, getting the first two outs of the frame with ease. However, two difficult plays to the left side of the infield put the tying run in scoring position for Maryland five-hole hitter Michael Montville.

"The defense had done a great job all night," Cotton said. "As soon as it happened, I put it behind me and went back out there because I knew my defense would help me out again."

True to form, Bregman nabbed a Montville short hopper and tossed to second to end the contest and preserve the save for the Shreveport native.

Mainieri credited his team with playing a solid game in windy, chilly conditions and gushed over the pitching job the trio of Nola, Bourgeois and Cotton executed, holding Maryland to four hits.

And after his career night to open the season, Sciambra emphatically put to rest any empathy or qualms from last season's injury.

"It was really a blessing to be out here to play again," Sciambra said. "I think they can put to rest any questions from last year."

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