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BASEBALL FALLS IN SLUGFEST TO UNLV, 18-14
LAS VEGAS - The Sacramento State baseball team dropped its first game of the season to the UNLV Rebels by a score 18-14 on Sunday, Feb. 21.
With the loss the Hornets fall to 2-1, while the Rebels improve to 1-2.
The third slugfest of the series saw UNLV opened the scoring in the bottom of the first, pushing three runs across the board. Jarred Frierson hit a one-out solo home run, and after two singles and a walk, Kyle Kretchmer connected on a two-run single to give the Rebels a 3-0 lead.
The Hornets got two runs back in the top of the second, as freshman Blake Miller produced a RBI single, scoring junior Kyle Baskett, to make the score 3-1. Senior Josh Powers then singled, which loaded the bases for junior Jake Chilton, who singled to center to cut the lead to 3-2. The Rebels came right back to push the lead back to three runs at 5-2 in the bottom of the inning, as Richie Jimenez and Drew Beuerlein each produced RBI singles.
Sacramento State then tied the score at 5-5 in the top of the third, as junior Trevor Paine connected on a three-run homer to left field. But UNLV once again had the answer, scoring four runs in the bottom half of the inning on a pair of two-run homers by Kretchmer and Hunter Beaty to take a 9-5 lead.
The scoring continued in the top of the fourth, as the Hornets cut the lead in half with a two-run homer by junior Derrick Chung, making the score 9-7 in favor of the Rebels. Kretchmer struck again in the bottom half of the inning, however, connecting on a RBI double. Nolan Clark followed it up with a RBI single, scoring Kretchmer, to push the UNLV advantage to four runs once again at 11-7.
A six run top of the fifth would give the Hornets their first lead of the contest, as Paine and Miller each doubled to lead off the inning, with Miller driving in Paine for the first run of the inning. Powers then followed with a two-run shot to left field, his second home run of the series, cutting the UNLV lead to 11-10. Chilton and junior Kirby Young produced back-to-back singles, and after sophomore Justin Lamb was hit by a pitch, the bases were loaded with nobody out. Junior Trevor Bloom singled to center field, and Chung followed it up with a RBI single of his own, with Lamb scoring on a throwing error by the left fielder, giving the Hornets a 13-11 lead.
UNLV cut the lead to 13-12 in the bottom of the fifth on a solo home run by Frierson, his second of the afternoon, and then the Rebels held the Hornets scoreless in the top of the sixth, the first scoreless half inning since the top of the first. The Rebels then took the lead for good in the bottom of the sixth, as Travis Feiner and Cash Thomas each produced RBI singles, giving UNLV a 14-13 lead. The Rebels scored four runs in the bottom of the eighth to put the game away, including the third home run of the game by Frierson, taking a 18-13 advantage.
Lamb would start a rally for the Hornets in the top of the ninth, doubling down the left field line to leadoff the inning. He then advanced to third on a groundout and scored on a passed ball, cutting the margin to 18-14. But the Hornets would fail to get another runner on base, falling by that count.
Neither starter factored in the decision, as Hornet freshman Jason Hampton allowed eight runs on nine hits in two innings of work, and Andrew Beresford allowed five runs on eight hits in three innings for the Rebels. Jared Lee (1-0) picked up the win for the Rebels, allowing one unearned run and two hits in 2.1 innings of work. Mike Guglielmo (0-1) picked up the loss for Sacramento State, allowing five runs, four earned, on five hits in 2.2 innings.
Powers continued his hot hitting to start the season, going 3-for-5 with a home run and two RBI. Chung and Paine each drove in three runs, with Chung connecting on his second home run and Paine hitting his first of the season.
Frierson led the Rebels with a three home runs and four RBI, while Kretchmer went 4-for-5 with five RBI.
Sacramento State will host San Francisco on Tuesday, Feb. 23 at Hornet Field. First pitch is scheduled for 2 p.m.
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