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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Arizona wins mid-week matchup with NMST ahead of clash with No. 2 Oregon State

Heather Newberry

Arizona outfielder Jared Oliva (42) hits the ball during the baseball game against Hartford on March 11 at Hi Corbett field.

Fresh off its series victory over UCLA last weekend, the Arizona baseball team defeated New Mexico State 6-3 Tuesday night at Hi Corbett Field. The win moved the No. 6 Wildcats to 16-4 on the season.

UA received a solid performance from starter Cody Deason who went 3.2 scoreless innings while giving up three hits with two strikeouts and one walk. Deason, who has some of the best pure stuff on the team, may have pitched his way into consideration for the second or third spot in the pitching rotation behind ace J.C. Cloney. 

“We had a plan to use eight or nine guys so to only use five was because of Cody,” said Arizona head coach Jay Johnson said. “We know he’s totally capable of it, we’ve seen it. It was good to see it for the first time this year.” 

The Wildcats got on the board quickly in the second inning when Nick Quintana reached on an error and then moved to third on a single by Cory Voss. Cesar Salazar promptly bunted in Quintana to give UA a 1-0 lead. The Wildcats tacked on another run when Kyle Lewis hit a bloop single to center to score Voss.

The offense picked up right where it left off in the third when Voss ripped an RBI double to left to score J.J. Matijevic and Jared Oliva to put UA ahead 4-0.

“I was just trying to get a good pitch to hit, I knew he was going to throw a bunch of off-speed,” Voss said. “I ended up getting a fastball inside and hit it down the line. It feels good to hit behind Nick Quintana and in front of Salazar, it gives me good pitches to hit.”

When Deason exited the game in the fourth, right-hander Landon Faulkner entered in relief. After an error on Quintana at third, Marcus Still of NMST hit a two-run home run to left to cut the Wildcats’ lead in half. However, the one earned run went on to be the only earned run the staff allowed for the game.

UA added to its lead in the sixth inning when Lewis hit an RBI double down the left field line to score Quintana and Salazar, pushing the lead to 6-2.

Michael Flynn and Austin Schnabel were both effective out of the bullpen for UA as the duo combined to throw 4.1 innings allowing two hits and no earned runs.

Johnson was pleased with the team’s performance heading into a top-10 matchup this weekend against No. 2 Oregon State.

“We have to figure out a plan to scratch it out against a really good pitching staff and a really good team,” Johnson said. “What an opportunity. I’m so excited for our players, this is why you come to Arizona.”

The opener against No. 2 OSU will be on Friday, March 24, at 7 p.m. in Corvallis, Oregon and will be live on the Pac-12 Network.

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