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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Scrappy Wildcats take down Huskies

Gordon Bates
Gordon Bates / Arizona Daily Wildcat

Despite an extra-inning loss Sunday afternoon, the No. 13 Arizona baseball team left Seattle, Wash., with a series victory over the Washington Huskies and again sit alone atop the Pac-12 Conference.

Junior Seth Mejias-Brean said it was a good weekend, but not a great one after the team dropped the game Sunday.

But even with the loss to a Washington team that sits near the bottom of the conference, Arizona is now a game up on both No. 8 Oregon and No. 11 UCLA in the Pac-12 standings.

“If you continue to take two out of three (in the conference), you’re going to be in good shape,” head coach Andy Lopez said.
Lopez added that he doesn’t pay attention to where the Wildcats sit in the standings though, since there are still plenty of games left in the competitive Pac-12.

The weekend started the same way it has for the past three weeks — a victory carried by the arm of Friday starter Kurt Heyer.

Heyer (7-1, 1.96 ERA) again went the distance for the Wildcats in his third-straight complete game victory, while allowing seven hits and one earned run to give Arizona a 10-2 win.

The Wildcats already led 4-0 before a six-run seventh inning gave the them a 10-run advantage and Arizona’s fourth-straight Friday win.

Heyer hadn’t given up a run going into the ninth inning, but a catcher-interference call and back-to-back hits by Washington spoiled the junior’s shutout bid.

Saturday again featured more dominance on the mound as starter Konner Wade (5-1, 3.84 ERA) threw a complete game of his own to give Arizona a 4-1 victory.

Wade has struggled at times this season, especially in his last start against UCLA when he gave up five earned runs in three innings pitched, but the sophomore shut down the Huskies Saturday.
Wade allowed just six hits and one earned run while striking out seven, and the Arizona offense provided enough support to secure the victory.

Five of the Wildcats’ nine hits were doubles, including RBI doubles by sophomore Johnny Field and junior Robert Refsnyder that turned the one run lead into the final score of 4-1.

Lopez said it was nice to see both Heyer and Wade throw complete games, but it’s not something that can realistically happen every time out.

“The bullpen needs to figure itself out,” Lopez said. “They’re not here to just go on rides … and drink (Powerade). They’ve got a responsibility, they’ve got to take care of their end of it.”
The bullpen blew a 4-2 lead late in the game Sunday to hand Arizona a 6-5 loss in the 12th inning, its first extra-innings game of the season.

Junior Seth Mejias-Brean said Washington earned the win Sunday, and it wasn’t a case of the Wildcats giving away a game.
“(Washington) played great, they battled back and just outplayed us,” Mejias-Brean said.

Starter James Farris (4-2, 4.33 ERA) didn’t have as much success as Heyer and Wade, but he gave up just four hits and three earned runs in 7.1 innings of work before being pulled for reliever Mathew Troupe in the eighth.

But Troupe blew his second straight save, giving up two earned runs without recording an out, and the 4-2 game was suddenly tied.
After the Huskies added a third run in the eighth to take a one-run lead, it all came down to Mejias-Brean with two-outs in the top of the ninth.

The junior delivered with a double down the left field line. Mejias-Brean then scored to tied it at 5-5 when Washington’s first baseman Trevor Mitsui couldn’t field a hit by senior Bobby Brown, sending the game into extra innings.

Reliever Stephen Manthei pitched all three of the extra innings, giving up just one earned run in his 4.1 innings of work, but the single run was all Washington needed as the Huskies walked off on a two-out single in the bottom of the 12th inning.

“I think we were just trying to do too much at the plate, and trying to get it all back in one swing,” Mejias-Brean said. “We just needed to play like it was the first inning again.”

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