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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


11-run fifth keys victory

Will Ferguson / Arizona Daily Wildcat

UA Mens baseball-March 29, 2011
Will Ferguson
Will Ferguson / Arizona Daily Wildcat UA Men’s baseball-March 29, 2011

After looking at the 12-3 final score of Tuesday’s baseball game against the University of New Mexico, it would be hard to believe that Arizona trailed as late as the fifth inning.

But that frame proved to be a turning point in the game. No. 18 Arizona (18-7, 1-2 Pacific 10 Conference) plated 10 runs — nine with two outs — in an inning that featured nine hits, just one error and saw Alex Mejia steal home.

“”We just got some big hits,”” said head coach Andy Lopez. “”They helped us a little with walks and things, but we kept it going with big hits and just got the momentum going. Once momentum gets going on your side, it’s hard to stop. It was nice for us, but tough for (New Mexico).””

The inning would have ended with only one Arizona run crossing the plate if not for right fielder Steve Selsky beating out a potential double-play ball with runners on first and third.

After Selsky’s hustle play, the game went straight downhill for the Lobos (9-16, 4-2 Mountain West Conference).

Bryce Bandilla was the benefactor of Arizona’s 10-run fifth, its highest run total in an inning since scoring 10 in 2007 against Stanford in Palo Alto, Calif., getting the win after 1.2 innings of work, striking out three and not allowing a hit.

“”It’s always good to get work in, I’m glad I pitched tonight,”” Bandilla said. “”I’ve been walking too many people, but I felt a lot better. I had one walk tonight, but I felt more comfortable than I have in the past.””

Waiting on the bench during Arizona’s offensive explosion could have posed a problem for Bandilla, but he was able to pitch a perfect inning after the wait.

“”It was (tough), but I went and warmed up in the ‘pen because it was such a long inning,”” Bandilla said. “”It was nice having that lead going in to pitch again. It’s a lot easier to pitch with a bigger lead.””

Bandilla replaced freshman starter Konner Wade after 4.1 innings of work. Wade allowed six hits and only one earned run in his second collegiate start.

“”I thought he pitched well,”” Lopez said. “”We didn’t play very good defense in one sequence where we threw a ball away on a sacrifice bunt. If we make that play, he might get the win, who knows.””

Arizona finishes the two-game series today at noon before hosting Oregon State to continue Pac-10 play during the weekend.

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