TUCSON, Ariz. (Apr. 29, 2012) – Clinging to just a one-run lead, No. 11 Arizona exploded for six runs in the bottom of the sixth and combined to score nine more runs in the seventh and eighth to roll past ETSU, 21-6, Sunday afternoon at Hi Corbett Field.
With the win, the Wildcats earned the three-game sweep over the Bucs and improved their record to 29-13 overall. Meanwhile, ETSU fell to 19-24 on the season with the loss. Arizona pounded out a season-high 27 hits, while all nine starters recorded at least one hit and one run scored.
Arizona starter James Farris (5-2) earned the victory despite allowing 10 hits and five runs in six innings. ETSU starter Kerry Doane (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) (4-3) picked up the loss after giving up 15 hits and eight earned runs in 5.1 innings.
Bobby Brown was 4-for-4 at the plate with a run scored and two RBI, while Johnny Field was 4-for-5 with two doubles, a triple, three runs scored and two RBI to lead the Wildcats offensively. Meanwhile, Joseph Maggi also recorded four hits as he finished 4-for-6 with three runs scored and two RBI.
Clinton Freeman (Jonesborough, Tenn.) was 3-for-5 with two RBI to lead the way for ETSU. Freeman has now reached base in 37 straight games as he had three hits in each game of the series. Meanwhile, Andrew Green (Powell, Tenn.), Jordan Sanford (Powell, Tenn.), Cory Betterson (Atlanta, Ga.) and Chris Riopedre (Miami, Fla.) each had two hits for the Bucs.
ETSU jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first when Green led off the inning with a triple and Freeman scored Green on an RBI ground out.
The Wildcats evened up the score with a run in the bottom of the first. Field led off the inning with a double to left field and Alex Mejia followed with a base-hit to right to put runners on the corners with no-outs. Then, Robert Refsnyder recorded a RBI sacrifice fly to right field to tie the score.
Brown, Riley Moore and Maggi recorded three straight hits to start the bottom of the second for the Wildcats to load the bases with no-outs. After recording two straight outs, Doane attempted to pick off Moore at third and his throw was errant – allowing both Moore and Maggi to score.
ETSU tied the game back up with two runs in the top of the third. With one-out in the inning, Green recorded his second extra base hit of the game when he hit a double down the right field line. Matthew Scruggs (Knoxville, Tenn.) followed by lining an RBI single right up the middle to score Green. After Freeman doubled to put runners on second and third, Dylan Pratt (Johnson City, Tenn.) recorded an RBI ground out to tie the score 3-3.
Arizona grabbed the lead once again with two more runs in the third. After Mejia flied out to start the inning, Refsnyder doubled to right field. After stealing third, Mejias-Brean recorded an RBI single to the shortstop. Brown followed with a single and Moore recorded a sacrifice fly to put the Wildcats up 5-3.
ETSU got to within a run after plating a run in the fourth on a RBI double by Riopedre. Sanford led off the inning and two batters later, Mason Hershey (Altoona, Pa.) reached base on a fielder’s choice, which retired Sanford at second. Riopedre then looped the 1-2 offering down the left field line to score Hershey from first.
The Wildcats reclaimed the two-run lead in the fifth when Moore scored Brown on an RBI single to right field.
Once again, the Bucs got to within a run when Hershey executed a safety squeeze that scored Sanford from third. Sanford got aboard on a one-out base-hit and later stole second. Then, Betterson singled through the right side to put runners on the corners and set up the squeeze play by Hershey.
Arizona blew the game open with six runs on five hits and an ETSU error in the bottom of the sixth. The Wildcats added three more runs in the seventh and six more in the eighth to put the game out of reach.
ETSU added a run in the ninth after an RBI single by Freeman scored Hershey, who led off the inning after being hit by a pitch.
The Bucs return home to face Appalachian State on Wednesday at Thomas Stadium. First pitch is set for 7:05 p.m.
For more information on ETSU baseball, please visit ETSUBucs.com and click on the baseball link.