TUCSON, Ariz. – In a pitcher's duel Arizona sophomore catcher Ryan Haug broke a 1-1 tie with a 2-run single in the seventh inning to lead his team to a 3-1 win over Sacramento State in the first of a three-game series on Friday night in Tucson.
The loss ended a four-game winning streak for Sacramento State, which moved to 8-4 on the season. Haug's single was his first career hit as Arizona improved to 9-4.
Both teams got strong starts from junior left handed pitchers. Sam Long was a hard luck loser for the Hornets, as he allowed just one run through the first six innings and just three runs on seven hits over seven innings. JC Cloney was superb as well, allowing just one run on seven hits and two walks with six strikeouts in 6.2 innings for the Wildcats.
Sacramento State put runners on base in each of the first four innings of the game and scored the game's first run in the top of the fourth. The Hornets put men on second and third with one away in the inning, and after Arizona got the second out sophomore Bronson Grubbs came through with an RBI single to plate junior Kody Reynolds and give the Hornets the lead.
Arizona tied the game in the bottom of the fourth as three straight hits to open the inning scored a run. The Wildcats had runners on second and third with one away but Long got out of the inning. In the bottom of the fifth Arizona shortstop Cody Ramer tried to stretch a two-out triple into an inside-the-park home run but was gunned down at the plate on a really from left fielder Chris Lewis to shortstop Trent Goodrich to catcher Gunner Pollman
The Hornets stranded doubles in the sixth and the seventh innings. In the bottom of the seventh, a single, walk, and sacrifice bunt put Wildcats on second and third before Haug singled to center to bring in both runners. Sacramento State freshman James Outman had a two-out double in the ninth inning to bring the tying run to the plate by Arizona reliever Bobby Dalbec closed the game with a strikeout.
Sacramento State outhit Arizona 8-7 and had three doubles but hit just 2-for-16 with runners on base. Seven of the nine starting position players had a hit for the Hornets. Sophomore Austin Root continued his immaculate season out of the bullpen striking out one in a scoreless eighth inning. Despite a solid 3.32 season ERA the loss dropped Long to 1-3 this year.
In game two of the series on Saturday the Hornets will throw senior Grant Kukuk against Arizona senior Nathan Bannister.