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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    A ton of Fon

    Redshirt freshman outfielder Diallo Fon beats out a throw in Arizonas 5-4 win over Morehead State yesterday at Sancet Stadium. Fon went 4-for-5, scored four of Arizonas five runs and stole three bases.
    Redshirt freshman outfielder Diallo Fon beats out a throw in Arizona’s 5-4 win over Morehead State yesterday at Sancet Stadium. Fon went 4-for-5, scored four of Arizona’s five runs and stole three bases.

    While the rest of his teammates essentially took the night off, Diallo Fon almost single-handedly willed the Arizona baseball team to a 5-4 win over Morehead State last night at Sancet Stadium.

    The left fielder, in the starting lineup for just the fourth time this season, led off four innings with hits, worked his way over to third base each time and scored all four times.

    “”Offensively, we had one player,”” said UA head coach Andy Lopez. “”Diallo showed up (last) night, and the rest of them have got to get better, that’s for sure.

    “”I’m a little perplexed, because I really thought we were going to swing – I saw some things (last) night that I’d seen for the last four or five weeks, and I thought we got it out of our system (in a 19-3 win over Hawaii-Hilo last week).””

    Fon finished 4-for-5 with four runs scored and three steals for the Wildcats (17-6).

    The redshirt freshman, who transferred from Vanderbilt before the season, has been biding his time on the bench behind a crowded outfield. But last night, Lopez shifted left fielder Brad Glenn to third, making room for Fon.

    “”It’s the first time all season that I’m getting the chance to play every day right now,”” Fon said, “”and I’m just trying to take advantage of it.””

    With his team trailing 4-3 in the seventh, Fon got his fourth hit of the day with a single past a diving Christian Winstanley at first to start the inning off.

    Fon scored three batters later on first baseman Bill Rhinehart’s sacrifice fly to right to knot the score at 4.

    Arizona took the lead when Glenn’s single bounced off the glove of Morehead State shortstop Drew Lee to score designated hitter C.J. Ziegler.

    In the fifth, Fon got Arizona started again when he led off with a triple off the wall in right-center and was knocked home by second baseman Colt Sedbrook a batter later. Fon’s third run of the game made it 4-3.

    After Fon bunted his way on to lead off the third inning and stole second and then third, Ziegler drove him home with a sac fly to left to cut the lead to 3-2.

    Fon’s single to right-center started the first. He then stole second, moved to third on a balk and was plated by a Ziegler ground out.

    “”His work ethic is probably as good as anybody in the club,”” Lopez said of Fon. “”The guy is here every day early – he’s here before people show up, he’s in the (batting) cage by himself – and he deserves what he’s getting right now. He’s really earned the position.””

    Outside of Fon, things weren’t very pretty.

    UA starter Ryan Perry walked the leadoff batter and made an error fielding Lee’s sac bunt, then struggled to get out of the first inning unscathed, giving up two runs.

    Lopez said he thought Perry, who missed the first 21 games of the season with an injury to his non-throwing arm, might have strained himself trying to field the bunt, saying that his velocity went down as the game went on.

    “”Offensively, we had one player. Diallo showed up tonight and the rest of them have got to get better, that’s for sure.””
    – Andy Lopez,
    UA head coach

    Perry settled down as the second inning started, retiring the next five Eagles in order, including four strikeouts.

    But the right-hander walked the next two batters in the third and then allowed a bloop single to third baseman Ryan Kinder as Morehead State went up 3-1.

    Slated for only 50 pitches, Perry threw 65 in 2 2/3 innings, struck out six and gave up the three runs – two earned – on two hits and three walks before he was lifted for right-hander Mike Colla in the third.

    UA righty Cory Burns (2-1) picked up the win after he struck out four and gave up just one hit over 2 2/3 innings. Lefty Daniel Schlereth pitched the ninth for his seventh save of the season.

    Right-hander Michael Bottoms (0-1) gave up three runs over the final four innings for Morehead State (4-14) and was charged with the loss.

    With runners on second and third with one out in the bottom of the second for Arizona, center fielder T.J. Steele, catcher Dwight Childs and shortstop Robert Abel all struck out swinging to end the threat.

    The trio, the bottom three batters in the Arizona lineup, went a combined 1-for-11 with five strikeouts.

    Things got ugly for the Wildcats in the top of the fourth. With one out, Eagle left fielder Trent Hanna grounded to Abel, who threw home as Morehead State second baseman Chris McCaslin broke for the plate.

    Childs ran McCaslin down, then fired to second to try to catch Hanna. But with nobody covering home, Eagle designated hitter Marc Midden took off from third and scored easily to put Morehead State back up by two at 4-2.

    “”It wasn’t a very good performance,”” Lopez said. “”We did some things that were not very good. We didn’t play good baseball.””

    Extra bases

    Arizona pitchers struck out a combined 15 batters … Steele was 0-for-17 until he singled in the eighth … Right-hander Jason Stoffel (1-0) will make his first career start when the two teams play today at 4 p.m. The freshman, who has appeared in seven games this season, has a 3.60 ERA with six strikeouts against three walks.

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