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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Sloppy Cats beat Thunderbirds

    Arizona junior catcher Konrad Schmidt extends through a pitch in the Wildcats 7-5 win over Southern Utah at Sancet Stadium yesterday afternoon. The Wildcats swept the two-game, nonconference series after winning 18-0 on Tuesday.
    Arizona junior catcher Konrad Schmidt extends through a pitch in the Wildcats’ 7-5 win over Southern Utah at Sancet Stadium yesterday afternoon. The Wildcats swept the two-game, nonconference series after winning 18-0 on Tuesday.

    Arizona 7, S. utah 5

    The Arizona baseball team proved it doesn’t always take a sharp, effective squad to win.

    Although the Wildcats (19-20, 5-7 Pacific 10 Conference) defeated Southern Utah (21-16) 7-5 yesterday afternoon at Sancet Stadium for their fourth straight victory, it was not always a pretty sight.

    Sloppy defensive play and spotty pitching at times was the Achilles’ heel for Arizona.

    “”We won,”” Arizona head coach Andy Lopez said. “”I didn’t necessarily think we played very well to be quite honest with you, which has been a concern for me. We have a tendency to turn it on and off.””

    Arizona was on when the Wildcats took two out of three from Stanford over the weekend and blew out the Thunderbirds 18-0 Tuesday night, but yesterday they were inconsistent, which is a problem that has plagued Arizona for much of the season.

    Arizona freshman right-handed starter Mike Colla lasted only 4 2/3 innings and gave up two earned runs while striking out six. Colla was replaced by fellow freshman right-hander Ryan Perry (2-0), who earned the win and put in three innings of work, giving up two runs and striking out four.

    “”I’m just seeing the ball really well right now, and I’m able to make contact.””

    – Brad Glenn, freshman first baseman

    “”The first couple of innings I felt really good,”” Perry said. “”The last inning I just started falling behind in the counts, not hitting my spots like I was, and that’s what hurt me. I just fell behind, and they knew what I was going to throw.””

    The Wildcats committed three errors on the game, including a dropped foul ball by junior right fielder Bill Rhinehart, which could have been converted into a double play to end the game.

    “”We seemed not too excited to play for a while,”” Lopez said. “”That’s something I don’t accept.””

    The Wildcats used a two-run rally in the sixth inning to take a 4-3 lead as freshman first baseman Brad Glenn crossed the plate on a single by freshman center fielder T.J. Steele. When Steele tried to steal second, Thunderbird freshman shortstop Keli’i Zablan botched the throw and senior designated hitter Derek Decater scored on the error.

    The Wildcats went on to score three runs in the seventh inning to pad their lead. Two of those runs were driven in by Glenn, who hit a home run over the left field wall.

    “”I’m just seeing the ball really well right now, and I’m able to make contact,”” said Glenn, who went 2-for-3 with three RBIs.

    The Thunderbirds threatened in the eighth inning, as they scored twice and brought the

    tying run to the plate, but redshirt freshman righty reliever Daniel Schlereth was able to secure the Arizona win and earn his fourth save of the season.

    The Thunderbirds scored two runs on a single by senior left fielder Charlie Hahl in the fifth inning, ending the day for Colla. Southern Utah would score once more in the inning on an unearned run off Perry to go up 3-1.

    After Arizona was held without a hit for the first three innings, Rhinehart laced a triple down the right field line in the fourth inning and scored on a sacrifice fly by Glenn to put Arizona up 1-0. Rhinehart is riding a 12-game hitting streak, a team high for the season.

    Sophomore third baseman Colt Sedbrook was hit by a pitch in the third inning and now holds the single season hit-by-pitch record with 20, surpassing the record set by junior shortstop Jason Donald. Sedbrook accomplished the task in 39 games, while it took Donald 52 games.

    The Wildcats return to Pac-10 Conference play as they take on Washington for a three-game series in Seattle starting tomorrow.

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