The Wildcats closed out a three game series against the Utah Tech Trailblazers Sunday, ending the home stand with two wins and one loss. Despite falling in the opening contest, ACU bounced back in the next two, winning each game by two runs.
The first game of the three day matchup at Crutcher Scott was action packed with only two of the nine innings not having a score. ACU’s offense was solid, with the team recording 12 hits, as well as three players having multiple hit games.
UTU was up in the offensive battle, recording 14 hits of its own, along with nine RBI’s. The Trailblazers never trailed in the game, and used that momentum to help generate scoring opportunities despite the Wildcat’s attempts to even up the score.
With a total of nine pitchers making appearances, the game was defined by defensive fortitude, and UTU was not afraid to take risks on offense. Good on-base percentage and well placed bunts would help the Trailblazers come out with the 14-6 win in the opening game.
In game two, the Wildcats stepped up on the defensive front, not allowing the Trailblazers to score until the sixth inning. Complementing this defense was another good day of hitting, with junior outfielder Logan Britt and senior outfielder Grayson Tatrow combining for four hits, three homers, and five RBI’s.
Senior right-hander Breck Eichelberger led the way on defense, pitching five innings and allowing only two hits. With ACU playing lights out, UTU needed to put runs on the board if they wanted any chance of coming back. Scoring four runs in the 9th was a step in the right direction, but the ACU defense remained stout until the finish, ending the contest with a strikeout taking the game 8-6.
With the series tied at one, both teams would want to establish an offensive presence and get out to an early lead in game three. Despite hopes for an offensive shootout, the defense of both teams shined, with only three scores until a pivotal moment for ACU in the bottom of the 7th.
With the Wildcats down 2-1, Tatrow stepped up to the plate and would hit a three run homer to put ACU ahead. This was crucial, as it provided the Wildcats with the momentum to put the game to sleep, only allowing UTU one hit in the final two innings. Junior right-hander Blake Anderson got the win, coming out of the bullpen and pitching 3.2 innings, allowing no runs on one hit, and recording three KO’s.
After struggling in the first game, ACU stepped up to the enjoyment of the home crowds and won the final two games of the series in close defensive battles. Despite UTU providing challenges from their offense, the Wildcats leaned on their consistent and deep bullpen to put an exclamation point on a series that got off to a rough start.
Up next on the schedule is a trip to Lubbock, where the Wildcats will resume their game against Texas Tech from April 25th. The game will start on at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, and pick up where the teams left off, resuming in the bottom of the 4th inning. When that contest concludes, the teams will play later that day at 6:30pm. Both games will be streamed live on ESPN+.
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