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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    “Guilmet, clutch hitting help baseball down champs”

    If he wasn’t already, Preston Guilmet is quickly becoming a big-game pitcher.

    The righty struck out 10 in his second-consecutive complete game and the Arizona baseball team used clutch hits from third baseman Brad Glenn and catcher Dwight Childs to down No. 4 Oregon State, 5-4, in front of a season-high 2,778 fans at Sancet Stadium Friday night.

    “”Tonight I made some mistakes, and those four runs shouldn’t be up there,”” said Guilmet, who gave up just three earned runs on seven hits while walking two on a season-high 132 pitches. “”Every game’s (important) and I come out, but when there’s big games like this, you just want to compete and go get ’em.””

    It marked the second time that Guilmet (6-0) had out-dueled a top-10 opponent this season, having beaten then-No. 8 Cal State Fullerton 2-1 Feb. 17.

    “”Guilmet, you could speak worlds of that kid, he’s just amazing,”” Glenn said. “”He’s one of the best pitchers I’ve ever seen.””

    Added UA head coach Andy Lopez: “”Guilmet obviously set the tone.””

    The loss snapped a 12-game winning streak for the defending national champion Beavers (23-4, 0-1 Pacific 10 Conference). Arizona (23-6, 1-0) extended its winning streak to nine games and is now 8-0 in one-run games.

    Though Guilmet saw his streak of consecutive scoreless innings end at 21 2/3 in the first inning when he left a change-up high in the strike zone that Beaver catcher Mitch Canham crushed for a two-run homer, he retired 11 of the next 13 batters he faced.

    And when he did get into trouble, Guilmet found a way to work around it.

    With Arizona up 5-3 in the eighth, right fielder Jon Gaston dropped a fly ball, second baseman Mike Weldon fell down trying to catch a line drive and then shortstop Robert Abel misplayed a ground ball as Oregon State cut the lead to 5-4 and still had runners on first and second with no outs.

    But Guilmet got OSU third baseman Drew George to pop out on a bunt attempt for the first out and then took care of the rest on one pitch, striking out pinch hitter John Wallace as UA catcher Dwight Childs gunned down Canham at third to end the inning.

    “”Especially with the way their club hits, you’ve got to figure they’re definitely going to have the runners moving, trying to get something created, maybe spread the defense a little bit,”” Childs said.

    “”Preston and I both decided slider, maybe get (Wallace) going, because a lot of the hitters were going after that a little bit. Preston made a great adjustment to (the steal), and then he gave me a great pitch to throw with.””

    After leaving five men on base through the first four innings – twice stranding runners on third base – the Arizona bats finally came alive with two outs in the bottom of the fifth, when the Wildcats scored four times on three hits.

    Down 3-1, Glenn delivered with a triple off the wall in center, knocking home his second and third RBIs of the game – all with two outs – to knot the game at 3.

    “”I thought it was either over (the fence) or caught,”” said Glenn, who finished 2-for-4. “”I thought the center fielder had it … but then I saw it drop and I was happy, because I knew I tied it up.””

    Childs plated two more after two walks and a pitching change with a single to right center to put Arizona on top, 5-3.

    It marked the first time in nine games that Oregon State gave up more than two runs, a stretch dating back to March 5.

    Oregon State starter Mike Stutes (6-1) went just 4 2/3 innings, giving up a season-high five earned runs on six hits. He walked five and struck out three on 119 pitches in taking his first loss of the year.

    Oregon State jumped out in a hurry. After a leadoff triple, Canham crushed his team-leading fifth home run of the year deep over the right field wall to spot Oregon State a 2-0 lead.

    “”From there on, it was like, ‘This isn’t happening again,'”” Guilmet said of the first inning. “”It kind of knocked me into realism when I gave that home run up.””

    Brad Mills (5-2) will throw for Arizona Saturday at 6 p.m., facing Oregon State’s Joe Paterson (5-1).

    Extra bases
    Guilmet was forced to go the full nine because closer Daniel Schlereth was unavailable after straining an oblique muscle in Wednesday’s win over No. 16 ASU in Phoenix.

    Lopez sent Schlereth to the bullpen in the sixth inning to see if he felt healthy enough to pitch, but after throwing, the lefty told Lopez he wouldn’t be able to close.

    Lopez said Schlereth’s day-to-day.

    “”If he can’t go this weekend, he can’t go this weekend,”” he said.

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