Going Cold in Utah

Mitchell Lobetos
Staff Writer

The men’s baseball team traveled to Provo, Utah last weekend to play a three-game set with Brigham Young University. The Dons (22-23, 14-7 WCC) went into the Cougars (21-19, 11-7 WCC) house looking to improve their winning record but found themselves on the wrong side of a sweep. Games two and three were extra inning affairs that San Francisco just couldn’t hold on to.

In Sunday’s finale the Dons sent out senior lefty Christian Cecilio in hopes of salvaging one game from the Cougars. Even though San Francisco had 11 hits and drew six walks, it wasn’t enough even though BYU only had 7 hits all game. In the fifth inning USF broke the 0-0 deadlock with a single from right-fielder Connor Hoffman scoring junior catcher Ryan Matranga; junior second baseman Ryan Eaton made a run for home plate as well but was tagged out before he could reach home safely. Trying to protect the 1-0 lead Cecilio pitched a clean sixth inning but in the bottom of the seventh gave up a two-run home run. USF tied it up 2-2 during the next half inning from a bases-loaded walk drawn by senior pinch-hitter Justin McCollough. Cecilio took the mound again and lasted 9.2 innings before tossing a wild pitch that gave BYU the walk-off.

Saturday’s game was also an extra inning ballgame that USF couldn’t hold on to. With the offense fueled by sophomore catcher Dominic Miroglio, the Dons jumped out to a 3-0 lead after the first inning. Freshman starting pitcher Jeider Rinco was knocked around for four earned runs and only lasted 2.2 innings, the score read 4-4 after 3 innings. After Rinco’s blow up, senior Matt Narahara took the hill and put in 6.0 solid innings of work but unfortunately gave up one unearned run in the seventh, BYU lead after 7 innings 5-4. USF tied the game back up thanks to a fielder’s choice, Miroglio earned the RBI and senior first-baseman Brendan Hendricks reached home. After getting the final out in the ninth inning, freshman righty Travis Ulvestad went back to work in the 10th but was unable to record an out. Ulvestad gave up a single, bunt, hit-by-pitch, and single for the Cougars to record the winning run.

On Friday’s game San Francisco got hit by a whirlwind of runs. Junior starting righty Anthony Shew was tagged for nine runs in the first two innings due in part to a few costly errors. The Dons shaved three runs off the deficit in the fourth inning thanks in part to two walks. Shew made it through the third frame and started the fourth but only lasted one out, BYU scored two more runs before Shew was pulled. After 3.1 innings of work Shew gave up 12 runs but only six were earned. With a daunting scoreline of 12-3, USF tried to battle back but only scored one more run while the Cougars tacked on two. The final score read 14-4.

This coming weekend the Dons will be here at home for a three game series against Pepperdine(22-20, 12-6 WCC). Games one and two will be packed into Saturday for a double header at 11 AM and 2 PM. Sundays game will be at 1 PM. Come out and support the men’s team in their second to last home stand before regular seasons end.

Photo courtesy of Dons Athletics

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