The Student News Site of University of Arizona

The Daily Wildcat

83° Tucson, AZ

The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Arizona baseball dismantled by UCLA

Colin Prenger
Colin Prenger / Arizona Daily Wildcat

The No. 4 Arizona baseball team was hit early and often by No. 17 UCLA, losing 15-3 and falling into a tie with Oregon for first in the conference.

“I just didn’t prepare us today,” head coach Andy Lopez said. “We didn’t pitch well, we didn’t play good defense, and hitting-wise we were just OK at best.

“It’s my responsibility to keep these guys sharp every night, and they were not sharp tonight.”
Sophomore Konner Wade (4-1) had been a dependable second starter all season long, but this was a game to forget — and the ugliness began before a single out was even recorded.

UCLA (23-8, 9-5 Pac-12) runners were on first and second when the Bruins’ Cody Keefer dropped a bunt down the third base line. Junior Seth Mejias-Brean charged down the ball, but his throw to first was errant and both runners scored on the play.

The inning didn’t get any better for Wade, as UCLA added three more to take a quick 5-0 lead before the Wildcats (24-10, 10-4 Pac-12) even came up to bat.

Lopez said Wade struggled the entire game at throwing strikes, and when he did throw them, the pitches went straight down the middle.

“That’s not the thing you can do in the Pac-12, you have to have location on one half or the other,” Lopez said. “You can’t throw down the middle part of the plate against anybody in the Pac-12.”

On the night Arizona surrendered 20 hits, two walks, and three hit batters — but the pitching staff wasn’t fully to blame for the loss.

The Wildcat defense committed five errors on the night, including three in the disastrous first inning. Wade never was able to figure out the UCLA hitters, allowing 10 hits and six runs in just three innings.

Reliever Vincent Littleman was brought in with the bases loaded and no outs in the top of the fourth inning, but limited the scoring — allowing one run, keeping the game manageable at 6-2.

However, Littleman decided to play with fire as he put himself right back into the same position the next inning, allowing the first three Bruins on base.

This time the outcome wasn’t as kind.

Littleman went 4.2 innings and gave up nine hits and nine runs, but only six were earned.
UCLA added three runs in the eighth inning off of two triples, and junior Augey Bill was brought in for his first appearance since 2010.
Bill stuck out Keefer swinging on three straight pitches and gave up just one hit in 1.1 innings of work, but the game was already well out of reach.

Arizona had 10 hits on the night, but they stranded eight runners on base and never really made any sort of a rally after UCLA took control in the fifth inning.

“We needed a couple interceptions and a punt return at one point,” Lopez said.

More to Discover
Activate Search