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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Baseball flawless in weekend tournament

    The No. 1 Arizona baseball team continued displaying its top-ranked performances after a weekend sweep in Corpus Christi, Texas, culminating with a 16-0 win over Notre Dame in the Whataburger College Classic yesterday.

    While explosive offensive production drove a seven-game winning streak heading into Friday’s tournament debut, the Wildcats (10-1) extended their success by not only tallying 38 hits over the weekend, but through a stellar pitching staff ERA of 0.00 after the three full games.

    Defeating its three opponents by a combined 37-0, Arizona pitchers threw 27 scoreless innings, limiting South Alabama, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi and Notre Dame to a mere 11 combined hits.

    Starters Preston Guilmet (2-1), David
    Coulon (3-0) and Ryan Perry (1-0) combined for 29 strikeouts.

    “”They did a great job throwing strikes,”” said UA head coach Andy Lopez, who was impressed with the 33-2 strikeout-walk ratio. “”I can’t really say anything except I’m happy for them.””

    Arizona powered over the Fighting Irish (5-6) with a season-high 20 hits, led by third baseman Dillon Baird, who went 4-for-5 with an RBI and two runs.

    First baseman C.J. Ziegler continued an explosive start by adding his eighth homer of the season, ending the game 3-for-5 with a double, triple and 3 RBIs – extending the Wildcats’ streak to 11 games with at least one home run.

    From top to bottom, all nine starters registered at least one hit.

    “”They got hot on a good weekend – I can’t really say anything other than each guy that showed up did a very good job,”” Lopez said.

    In Arizona’s 3-0 win over Texas A&M-Corpus Christi on Saturday, left fielder Diallo Fon registered Arizona’s only two hits but they proved to be enough for starting pitcher Coulon’s lights-out performance. Coulon (3-0) recorded 11 strikeouts through eight innings, only allowing one hit before co-closer Jason Stoffel struck out three hitters in the ninth.

    For only the second time in six games, the Wildcat bats didn’t surpass 10 runs, prompting hitters to manufacture runs.

    “”Offense is something that we hope to have from a constant standpoint,”” Lopez said. “”We had to manufacture a run or two to get it done. I was very happy with the offense from a standpoint, but more importantly, we did a good job running the bases.””

    Freshman shortstop Bryce Ortega continues to impress after this weekend’s “”marvelous”” job that Lopez said was nearly flawless in the field.

    Granting Ortega his first start against UNLV, Lopez aimed to solidify the middle infield defensively after Arizona committed 14 errors in its first six games.

    And it didn’t matter that the Wildcats took an 18-run lead into the eighth inning of Friday’s contest versus South Alabama; starting pitcher Guilmet just threw strikes, mowing down 12 opposing batters in eight innings to reach the 2008 preseason All-American status he earned.

    “”Again, we talk about trying to get better every day we show up,”” Lopez said. “”You can’t ask for more. I guess I could try to get critical on some things. … but for the most part, we’d obviously be very happy if that was the trend here for the next few months.””

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