Brett Michael Doran delivered a two-out, bases-loaded single in the bottom of the 11th inning to give Stanford a 1-0 victory over Arizona.
May 20, 2011
Stanford 1, Arizona 0 -- 11 innings (Box Score)
PALO ALTO, Calif. - Brett Michael Doran came off the bench to provide a two-out, bases-loaded single in the bottom of the 11th inning to break open a scoreless game and give host Stanford a 1-0 victory over the visiting Arizona baseball team on Friday evening at Sunken Diamond.
After 10 scoreless innings, the game appeared to be ready to head into the 12th inning when Arizona reliever Bryce Bandilla registered a pair of strikeouts to open the home half of the 11th inning. However, the left-hander issued a two-out walk to Tyler Gaffney, before Gaffney moved into scoring position with a stolen base.
Bandilla then hit Stephen Piscotty with a pitch on a 3-2 count to put a pair of runners on base. The Bandilla loaded the bases with another walk to Brian Ragira, which prompted the Wildcats to turn to Matt Chaffee out of the bullpen.
Doran, who drew a pinch-hit walk to lead off the 10th inning, fell behind 0-2 to Chaffee. But Doran worked the count even at 2-2, before lining the game-winning single to left center to score Gaffney from third.
The base hit was the first of the game with a runner on base for the Cardinal, which tallied just five hits. In fact, Stanford hitters had just two at bats with runners in scoring position prior to the 11th inning.
The walk-off victory spoiled a sensational pitching performance by Arizona starter Kurt Heyer, who pitched nine scoreless innings in a no-decision. Heyer scattered just four hits and did not walk a batter as he racked up 10 strikeouts in the game.
Stanford (29-18, 11-11 Pac-10) received an equally impressive effort from Mark Appel, who tossed eight-plus scoreless innings. Appel gave up six hits, one walk and struck out nine in a no-decision.
Arizona (32-18, 11-11 Pac-10) squandered several opportunities throughout the game, including a chance in the top of the ninth inning. Bryce Ortega singled off Appel to lead off the frame. The Cardinal elected to go to bullpen and brought in closer Chris Reed.
Cole Frenzel moved Ortega to second base on a sacrifice bunt. But as was the story much of the game, the Wildcats were unable to get a key hit with runners in scoring position. Johnny Field went down on strikes and Robert Refsnyder grounded out to end the threat.
The Wildcats, who did not get a base hit in two extra innings, went hitless in eight at bats in the game with runners in scoring position. They also produced just one hit with a runner on base in the game, and that opportunity came in the third inning.
Bobby Rinard singled to lead off the third and moved to second on a single by Alex Mejia. Seth Mejias-Brean bunted the runners to second and third, before Rickard pulled a grounder to Piscotty, the third baseman. Piscotty backhanded the grounder and fired home to cut down Rinard trying to score from third.
With runners on the corners and two down, Arizona attempted a double-steal. Rickard took off early from first base, but the Stanford defense was able to throw out Mejia, who was trying to score from third, at the plate.
Stanford mounted just one serious scoring threat before winning the game in extra innings. In the bottom of the 7th inning, Ragira laced a double down the first base line. A sacrifice bunt moved Ragira to third base, but Heyer induced a pair of shallow fly outs to end the inning.
Reed (5-2) earned the win after pitching three perfect innings out of the bullpen.
Bandilla (4-2) suffered the loss after giving up one run in 1.2 innings of relief. He did not allow a hit, but walked three and hit a batter.
The loss was just Arizona's third in its last 11 games. All three decisions have been decided by one run, including the last two in extra innings. Last Saturday at Washington State, the Wildcats dropped the opener 7-6 in 10 innings, before bouncing back to win the next two.
Arizona and Stanford will continue the three-game series on Saturday afternoon. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m. at Sunken Diamond. The game will be broadcast on 1290 AM in Tucson and through www.arizonawildcats.com.