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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Refsnyder to the rescue

Baseball game at The University of Arizona,
Baseball game at The University of Arizona,

After blowing a 7-2 first inning lead, the Arizona baseball team needed an answer in the bottom of the ninth with the score tied 9-9.

Robert Refsnyder gave it to them.

On the first pitch of the half inning, Refsnyder tattooed a ball deep into left. The New Mexico fielder settled underneath it, but the ball carried over the wall.

Walk off home run, 10-9 Wildcat victory.

“”It was nice to contribute today,”” said Refsnyder, a sophomore. “”I’ve hit a rough patch the last couple of weekends, and it feels good to contribute to the win today.””

Arizona head coach Andy Lopez applauded the efforts of his offense, but the work of his bullpen, especially third year reliever Bryce Bandilla, gave him cause for concern.

“”(On Tuesday) night he threw 29 pitches and looked super. He had command of his fastball and all the rest,”” Lopez said. “”I think (Bandilla) tries to do too much too often. He gets behind in the count. And after you’ve seen him once, as an opposing team, and he doesn’t have command of his secondary pitch, then you see his fastball again.””

Matt Chaffee, on the other hand, has been solid. In two innings of work, Chaffee struck out three and didn’t allow a hit.

“”It’s good that I’ve been able to go out there everyday,”” Chaffee said. “”I’ve just been trying to get back in the feel of things, and have been trying to get a better feeling for my pitches.””

Chaffee’s strategy for taking the mound in the eighth and holding onto the Wildcats’ 9-9 lead was simple.

“”I just tried to make one pitch at a time,”” he said. “”I just had to tell myself that if I made a good quality pitch, I could get out of the situation.””

Even though Refsnyder sealed the victory for the Wildcats, the opportunity wouldn’t have even been presented if it weren’t for the bats of Joey Rickard and Cole Frenzel.

Rickard, who leads the nation with 52 hits and leads the team with a .477 batting average, tacked on two hits and a run scored.

“”I turned to Joey Rickard today in about the fourth inning and said, ‘Hey, do you pitch?'”” Lopez said of his do-it-all player. “”His make-up is outstanding, and he’s a joy. He’s a great player, but he’s a good guy. He’s definitely got a future in this game.””

Both Rickard and Frenzel, according to Lopez, are driving Arizona’s resurgence after a disappointing end to the 2010 season.

“”(Rickard and Frenzel) both have great work ethic,”” Lopez said after the game. “”What happened to the club at the end of the year last year was we just wore down physically, and they were aware of it.

“”They made a commitment this past off-season to get bigger and stronger in the offseason, which they have. We’ll see it now in the next eight weeks or so.””

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