Tyler Yagi led the Utes at the plate against UC Davis.
Feb. 20, 2010
DAVIS, Calif. - The Utah baseball team split a doubleheader with UC Davis to close out the series on Saturday, winning game one, 7-1, before falling in game two, 6-1.
The first game started as a pitching duel between Utah's Andrew Wilding and UC Davis' Anthony Kupbens, as the game went scoreless for the first five and a half innings. The Aggies broke through in the bottom of the sixth, with Scott Heylman scoring on a fielder's choice after doubling to lead off the inning.
The Utes responded with a four-run seventh to take the lead. Rick Cornu walked and Jo Jo Sharrar singled through the left side to put two on base. Sharrar was replaced with pinch runner Josh Reed before both runners moved over on a balk. Cooper Blanc loaded the bases with a walk. Tyler Yagi drove in the first run of the game with a single to send in Cornu, and Sharrar and Blanc also scored on the play after a pair of errors by the left fielder. Yagi stole third and scored when Michael Beltran grounded out, giving Utah a 4-1 lead.
Utah extended its lead in the ninth inning, adding three runs. Mark Moorman was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning and would later score on a ground out by Yagi. Beltran, Nick Kuroczko and C.J. Cron each hit successive singles, with Cron sending Beltran across the plate and Kuroczko also scoring after an error, pushing Utah's lead to 7-1.
Wilding would pitch six innings, allowing four hits and one run with three strikeouts for his first win of the year. Stephen Streich would pitch the final three innings to earn the save. He allowed one hit and struck out three.
Utah struggled to carry over its offensive performance from game one into game two. Although the Utes scattered seven hits throughout the game and had several runners in scoring position, they could not capitalize.
UC Davis scored two runs in the first inning, three in the third and a run in the fourth to take a 6-0 led. Utah starter Rick Anton allowed six runs and eight hits over 3.1 innings, striking out three in the loss. A pair of freshmen, Brock Duke and Zach Adams, both pitched strong in relief in their first appearances on the mound for Utah. Duke allowed just two hits and had four strikeouts in 3.2 innings, while Adams struck out all three batters he faced in the game.
Utah scored its lone run of the game in the top of the ninth. Cron led the inning off with a single and Reed came in to pinch run. Nik Gumeson reached on an error, moving Reed to second. Reed went to third on a fly out before scoring off Moorman's sacrifice fly.
Yagi had three hits in the second game to go 5-for-9 over the doubleheader.
"We finally put some offense together in the last three innings of game one but didn't sustain it into game two, which was a little disappointing," head coach Bill Kinneberg said. "Yagi really swung the bat well and C.J. had some good at-bats but hit right at them. This is a tough park to hit in and it's going to be important that when we play in parks like this and we get guys on second base we put a good swing on the ball. We hit too many pop-ups today.
"Anton didn't pitch today like he is capable of pitching, but Duke and Adams pitched well, and Streich and Wilding both pitched great."
Utah returns to the field on Friday, Feb. 26, for the start of a three-game series against Sam Houston State.