SACRAMENTO, Calif. ?- The No. 6-ranked Arizona baseball team lost 4-3 to UC Irvine in 11 innings at Hornet Field in Sacramento, Calif., on Friday. The loss, just the second in UA’s last 11 games, dropped the Wildcats to 27-12 overall for the year, while UC Irvine improved to 19-16 with the win.
UCI’s Brett Dalton drove home Cody Cipriano with a two-out single to center for the game-winning run as Arizona fell in extra innings for the first time in 2005. Cipriano had reached base on a single one hitter earlier and advanced around to third on a pair of wild pitches.
The extra-inning loss was charged to Arizona closer Mark Melancon (3-3), who gave up one run on two hits in four innings in relief of starter John Meloan. UCI’s Blair Erickson (1-2) picked up the win after holding Arizona scoreless over the final 2 1/3 innings.
Hitless and trailing 3-0 after six innings, the Wildcats broke through to make a game of it in the seventh on a solo home run by Brad Boyer, the first UA hit in the contest, a run scoring triple by Jordan Brown and a sacrifice fly by Chris Frey. It wasn’t enough, however, as UCI ended Arizona’s hopes for a fourth walk-off victory this season with the run in the 11th.
Boyer and Jason Donald were the lone Wildcats to finish with multiple hits, going 2 for 4 each.
Arizona and UCI will meet up again on Saturday at 10:30 am before Arizona takes on host school Sac State at 2 p.m.