John Welsh drove in the game-winning run and also stole home in the ninth inning Sunday. (Photo by Brent Asay)
Feb. 19, 2006
DAVIS, Calif. -- The University of Utah baseball team broke a 6-6 tie with three runs in the top of the ninth and held on to stop UC Davis 9-6 Sunday afternoon at the Dobbins Baseball Complex. With the win the Utes took the series from the Aggies 2-1. Utah improved its overall record to 4-5.
Second baseman Bret Baldwin reached on an error to open the ninth. Corey Shimada came on to pinch run for Baldwin and moved to second when Mike Tummolo reached on an infield hit. Center fielder John Welsh then laced a Nik Aurora offering off the wall in left-center driving Shimada home with the eventual game-winning run.
UC Davis intentionally walked third baseman Erich Kemp to set up a possible double play. But right fielder Joe Mozeleski lofted a sacrifice fly to left field, pushing Tummolo across with the second run of the inning to make it 9-7. Kemp and Welsh then successfully executed a double steal, with Welsh stealing home to account for Utah's ninth run.
"UC Davis is a pretty good club," Utah head coach Bill Kinneberg said. "I was really proud of the way we played this weekend. We won two close games, which is really important for the team's growth. It was good to win a game like that, where every play meant something."
Brad DeVore, who came on with two outs in the eighth inning, tossed 1 1/3 innings to pick up the victory. DeVore (1-0) allowed a leadoff single in the bottom of the ninth, but the Aggies were unable to advance a runner past second base in the inning. Aurora (1-1) suffered the loss for UC Davis, allowing three runs on two hits, while walking two in two innings.
"Trinnaman pitched well for six innings," Kinneberg said. "After that, we were able to piece enough pitching together to get to the ninth and DeVore was able to pick up the win."
Utah erupted for a four-run, two-out rally in the top of the sixth to back on top. Welsh started the rally with a single to left. Kemp then deposited a Justin Fitzgerald pitch over the left-field wall to put Utah on top 4-3. Mozeleski singled and catcher Adam Frank reached on an error. Tyler Kmetko put the Utes on top 6-3 with a two-run single to center off UC Davis reliever Bryan Evans.
The Aggies pulled within one run in the seventh, scoring a pair of runs off Utah reliever Jason Price. UC Davis then tied it in the bottom of the eighth, after getting three singles off the Utes' Shad McCord.
Welsh was 3-for-5 with three runs scored and an RBI. Kemp finished 2-for-4 with three RBIs and a run scored, while Kmetko was 2-for-3 with two RBIs.
The Utes will be back in action again Friday for the first of four games in College Station, Texas. Utah faces Missouri State in its first outing at the Domino's Pizza Aggie Baseball Classic.