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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Arizona baseball gets swept by USC

Rebecca Marie Sasnett

Arizona baseball was swept by USC in Los Angeles over the weekend for the first time in head coach Andy Lopez’s tenure at Arizona. The last time the Wildcats were swept by USC was in 2001, and the last time the Trojans swept a Pac-12 opponent in a three-game series was 2009.

Arizona baseball was shut out twice over the weekend against USC in Los Angeles, allowing the Trojans to earn their first conference series sweep since 2009.

USC (20-17, 9-9 Pac-12) had not swept Arizona (17-23, 6-12 Pac-12) since 2001. UA head coach Andy Lopez began his tenure in 2002.

The Trojans defeated Arizona on Saturday to complete the sweep after USC’s senior Bob Wheatley and sophomore Kyle Davis combined for a 2-0 shutout. Despite USC’s offense struggling to get hits early in the game, the Trojans’ pitching allowed no hits from Arizona in six at-bats while runners were on base. It wasn’t until the seventh inning that the Trojans got their offense started.

Arizona’s starting pitcher, junior Tyger Talley (1-1), took the loss after going 6.2 innings and allowing five hits, one strikeout and two earned runs.

Talley started strong, but USC junior Dante Flores and sophomore Blake Lacey had two consecutive, one-out singles, leaving runners on first and third to get the rally started in the seventh.

Sophomore left-handed pitcher Cody Moffett and sophomore right-handed pitcher Nathan Bannister each pitched 0.2 innings, and Moffett gave up a hit. Arizona’s offense finished the night with two hits.

Sophomore center fielder Zach Gibbons and sophomore shortstop Kevin Newman contributed with one each.

Sophomore outfielder Scott Kingery, who had been out of the starting lineup for the first two games of the series due to a bruised bone in his foot, started as the designated hitter. However, with three at-bats, Kingery did not get a hit.

The Wildcats kept all the games close during the series. On Friday, Arizona lost in the 12th inning after USC redshirt junior Omar Cotto Lozado hit a two-out walk-off single to give the Trojans the 5-4 win to clinch the series. Lozado contributed a game-winning hit for USC on Feb. 23 against North Dakota State, launching a two-run home run and in the 12th inning as well.

He went 3-for-6 with two runs scored and one run batted in. The Trojans finished with 16 hits in the game, led by freshman Jeremy Martinez, who went 4-for-6 with one RBI.

Arizona’s pitching allowed eight different Trojans to get hits, but Arizona junior Tyler Krause gave the Wildcats hope when he hit a solo home run in the top of the seventh inning to tie the game 3-3. The Wildcats took the 4-3 lead after Gibbons earned an RBI.

Arizona freshman utility player Bobby Dalbec (2-3) entered as pitcher in the bottom of the eighth.

After a throwing error by Dalbec, USC took advantage and put runners on each corner with just one out. A squeeze bunt tied the game 4-4. Soon Dalbec’s relief pitching turned into 5.1 innings, and he took the loss for the night.

Redshirt sophomore Cody Hamlin was the starting pitcher. Hamlin pitched 6.1 innings, allowing 10 hits on 101 pitches.

Arizona returns home for an off day on Monday and a three-game series against ASU starting Friday at Hi Corbett Field. The two teams split midweek nonconference games in Tempe, Ariz., earlier this season.

—Follow Rose Aly Valenzuela @RoseAlyVal

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