USF Baseball: Bulls fall to Charlotte

Lane continues hot start with three-run homer; 4,995 fans attend weekend games

TAMPA (February 20, 2022) – The USF baseball team (1-2) closed out the opening weekend of the 2022 season with an 8-3 loss to Charlotte (2-1) at the USF Baseball Stadium Sunday. The game was called due to time constraints midway through the ninth and, under the rules, the score and stats revert back to where they stood at the completion of the eighth.

The Bulls, coming off an American Athletic Conference championship and first-ever NCAA Super Regional appearance last season, welcomed tremendous crowds and a total of 4,995 fans to Red McEwen Field over the weekend. USF went 1-2, downing Louisville on Saturday while dropping an extra-inning contest with UConn on Friday.

On Sunday, Charlotte starter Will Lancaster held the Bulls scoreless through 5 1/3, giving up just two hits and leaving with an 8-0 lead in the sixth.

Sophomores Carmine Lane did the damage for the Bulls, hitting a three-run homer in the sixth. Sophomore Matt Ruiz got an inside-the-park home run in the ninth, but the play was negated due to the game being called before the end of the ninth inning, which saw an extended delay due to injuries to two Charlotte players on the Ruiz play. USF sent nine pitchers to the mound, with the middle six holding the 49ers scoreless while scattering four hits.

Charlotte jumped on Bulls’ starter Jack Cebert as the freshman walked the first batter he faced and then gave up a two-run homer to David McCabe. The 49ers plated two more in the first inning, tapping Cebert for four runs on two hits and three walks.

Redshirt freshman Nolan Hudi replaced Cebert on the mound in the second for USF and was tapped for four runs as well on four hits. This time Charlotte’s Austin Knight did the major damage with a three-run homer to center.

The Bulls turned to another freshman in the third as right-hander Dylan Vega went to the hump. Vega neutralized the 49ers through three innings, giving up no runs and working around one hit in each of the third, fourth and fifth innings.

Sophomore left-hander Ethan Brown entered in the sixth with the Bulls down 8-0. He issued two walks, but left two stranded, inducing a groundout to get out of the inning unscathed.

Lane got the Bulls on the board in the bottom half of the sixth when he launched a three-run bomb, his first of the year, over the left field wall to score Drew Brutcher and Ben Rozenblum. Lane, a freshman All-American and 2021 second-team All-AAC, was third on the team with 11 home runs last year.

Freshman right-hander Austin Grause worked a scoreless seventh for the Bulls, giving up one hit, and then handed the ball to sophomore left-hander Caleb Pundsack for the eighth. Pundsack gave up a walk before retiring two and handing the ball to Tanner Mink who got a fly out to end the inning, the last the counted in the official stats.

Freshman right-hander Tyler Dietz pitched the ninth for the Bulls, and gave up two walks before Charlotte scored on an error on a short fly ball to center. Senior Joseph Sanchez relieved Dietz. He got one out on a sacrifice bunt that made the 49ers lead 10-3, before retiring the side with a deep fly ball to right.

With one out in the ninth, Ruiz drove a ball to left-center that caused the 49ers’ left and center fielders to dive and collide. Ruiz circled the bases as the ball rolled to the wall and both players remained down for several minutes before slowly walking into the dugout. After the delay, the game was called due to time constraints with two outs remaining in the ninth and the score and statistics reverted back to the completion of the eighth inning.


  • Carmine Lane drove in three runs with his first home run of the season and finished the opening weekend going 5-of-12 with five RBI, a triple and a home run.
  • Lane leads the Bulls hitting .417 on the year with an .833 slugging percentage.
  • The teams combined to send 13 pitchers to the mound – nine for USF and four for Charlotte.

Up Next

The Bulls return to the USF Baseball Stadium next weekend for a three-game series vs. Stony Brook that begins Friday with a 7 p.m. first pitch.

For tickets, please visit or call 1-800-Go-Bulls.

About USF Baseball

The USF Baseball program played its first season in 1966 and is entering its 57th season in 2022. Head coach Billy Mohl is entering his fifth season at the helm. The Bulls have made 14 NCAA Tournament appearances, including four since 2015, and earned their first-ever Super Regional berth in 2021. USF was ranked in the Top 25 by five different publications in the final 2021 polls, checking in as high as No. 16. The Bulls have won five conference tournament titles (3 Sun Belt, 1 Metro and 1 American) and six regular season championships (3 Sun Belt, 2 Metro and 1 C-USA). USF baseball players have been recognized with All-America honors 12 times, most recently with third baseman David Villar in 2018, and 18 have earned Freshman All-America accolades, most recently Drew Brutcher and Carmine Lane in 2021. Four players were selected in the 2018 MLB Draft, including the program’s fourth first-round selection in pitcher Shane McClanahan, who made his Major League debut with the Tampa Bay Rays in the 2020 World Series and was the Rays’ postseason game one starter in 2021.