April 20, 2009
Final Box Score | Arizona Overall Stats
SPOKANE, Wash – The Arizona baseball team picked up a much needed non-conference victory by narrowly hanging on to defeat Gonzaga, 8-7, on Monday afternoon at the Patterson Baseball Complex.
Arizona (17-19) took an 8-5 lead in the top of the seventh inning on a day it tallied seven two-out RBI, but the Bulldogs battled back with single runs in the bottom of the seventh and eighth innings.
In the ninth, Gonzaga (25-13) put its first two batters on base, but UA reliever Cory Burns buckled down and was able to close out the game, earning his first save of the season.
With one out in the ninth and runners on second and third, Burns induced a ground ball to second baseman Kyle Stiner, who was playing in on the edge of the grass. Stiner fielded the ball cleanly and threw to catcher Daniel Butler to cut down the possible tying run at the plate.
Evan Wells flew out to Bobby Coyle in left field to end the game, snapping a three-game losing streak for the Wildcats.
Arizona used a makeshift pitching rotation one day after a wild 11 inning game taxed the pitching staff. Donn Roach got the start, but was limited to two innings of work. Roach teamed with Bryce Bandilla to no-hit the Bulldogs over the first three innings.
Matt Veltmann, Joe Allison and Daniel Workman pitched the fifth through eighth innings before turning the game over to Burns. Allison earned his third victory of the season.
Jett Bandy homered to lead off the second inning and Hunter Pace added another solo shot in the top of the third to stake UA to a 2-0 lead.
The Wildcats tacked on a third run in the fifth inning as Bryce Ortega drove in Steve Selsky with a two-out RBI single up the middle, giving UA a 3-0 advantage.
In the home half of the fifth, the Bulldogs loaded the bases with a lead off double and then a walk and a hit by pitch off Veltmann. Gonzaga first baseman Ryan Weigand then blasted a grand slam to straight away center field to give the Bulldogs their first lead of the game, 4-3.
The Wildcats opened the game up in the seventh inning, adding three two-out runs to claim an 8-5 lead. Dillon Baird picked up an RBI single, driving in Stiner, who had earlier reached on a hit by pitch.
The inning appeared to be over as Shaun Cooper, who already had two singles in the game, lifted a high fly ball to left field. But, Gonzaga left fielder Mark Castellitto lost the ball in the sun, allowing it to fall for a double. Baird and Bandy, who also was hit by a pitch in the inning, scored to give UA a three run lead.
In the bottom of the seventh, reliever Daniel Workman worked out of a bases loaded jam with no outs by allowing only one run – an unearned run after Tyson Van Winkle reached on an error to lead off the inning.
Workman was able to get Castellitto to foul out, then gave up a sacrifice fly to Grant Kveder to bring home the innings only run. A ground out one pitch later left UA with an 8-6 lead.
Arizona will remain on the road this coming weekend as it travels to Palo Alto, Calif., to take on the Stanford Cardinal beginning on Friday.