Arizona held off a ninth-inning rally and defeated California, 5-4, on Sunday afternoon to capture a sixth-straight win and climb back to .500 in Pac-12 play.
Arizona received a strong start from freshman Tyger Talley, but a seven-run seventh inning doomed the Wildcats as Texas Tech earned a split with a 5-2 win on Wednesday.
Arizona was down to its final strike three times, but found a way to load the bases to set the table for Brandon Dixon's three-run walk off triple to give UA an 8-7 victory over San Jose State.
The Wildcats begin defense of their national title on Friday, Feb. 15, at 6 p.m. at Hi Corbett Field.
2012 National Coach of the Year Andy Lopez looks back on UA's fall practice season and looks ahead to the upcoming 2013 season.
A top reserve at second base ... Appeared in five games with one start ... Went 1-for-5 with a walk and two runs scored and had career-high four putouts and two assists in only start of season against East Tennessee State (4/29). Entered as a defensive replacement and went 0-for-1 in first game of series against Bucs (4/27) ... Entered as a defensive replacement and went hitless in only at bat in appearance against New Mexico State (3/21) ... Pinch hit (0-for-1) and remained in game to play second base, registering one putout against Eastern Michigan (3/10) ... Went 0-for-1 with a walk and an RBI in pinch-hit performance against Harvard (3/4).
Played in three games as a redshirt freshman ... Made two pinch-hit appearances and one defensive appearance at second base ... Tallied first career assist defensively at second base against Alcorn State (5/8) ... Went 0-for-1 following pinch-hit opportunity against New Mexico (3/29) and stayed in game to play second base ... Drew a walk and scored a run in first career plate appearance at UNLV (3/8).
Graduated from Sabino High School in Tucson, Ariz., in 2009 ... Earned two varsity letters under coach Rod Allen ... Named a First Team All-Kino Region member ... Hit .450 and reached base at a .490 clip as a senior ... Played for the 2009 American Legion State Championship team ... Also played basketball in high school, earning one varsity letter.
Born in Thousand Oaks, Calif. ... Son of Andrew and Linda Lopez ... Has two older sisters, Kristi and Kerri ... Played three seasons with older brother Michael, who is now the team's volunteer assistant coach ... Is enrolled in the College of Humanities with a major in religious studies and a minor in history ... Hobbies include reading, playing Temple Run and finding peace in nature ... Favorite professional sports team is the Los Angeles Dodgers ... Future career aspirations include moving to an underdeveloped country or going to seminary ... Rooms with teammates Brandon Dixon, Johnny Field and Stephen Manthei.