Kyle McDonald, Sports Writer, @kylesportsbias
In the rubber match of a three game series, the Utah Valley Wolverines were looking to avoid starting the season 0-6 against Long Beach State in Long Beach, CA on Sunday February 22, 2015. They did just that by picking up their first win of the 2015 campaign with an 8-3 victory over the Dirtbags in front of 977 people at Blair Field.
With the score 1-0 in the top of the fourth inning, UVU would put together a string of timely hits and walks to take a 2-1 lead. Tate Harding would single to right, driving in Seth Rhineer for the first run. Spencer Gothberg would then draw a bases-loaded walk to score Jake Atkinson for the second run.
They would add two more runs in the top of the sixth inning as Harding would score on a Kade Andrus infield single and Gothberg would score on a failed pickoff attempt to make the score 4-1.
Jared James would single for the Dirtbags scoring Daniel Jackson to make the score 4-2 in the botth of the sixth. LBSU would get another one in the bottom of the seventh inning as pinch-hitter Nico Maida drew a bases-loaded walk to score Garrett Hampson and put the score at 4-3. It was as close as LBSU would get.
UVU blew the game open in the top of the ninth inning when a Mark Krueger single to right field scored Andrus and Zac Fuller. It was followed by a Jake Atkinson single to left field that scored Rhineer from second base and Tate Harding finished off the break out inning with a single up the middle to score Krueger and make the final score 8-3.
Krueger and Harding both drove in two runs for the Wolverines and Harding also had two hits. Rhineer was efficient when he got on base as he scored two runs for UVU who was looking to someone to take advantage of big opportunities.
Sophomore Patrick Wolfe would pick up the win for the Wolverines on the mound. He went five innings allowing only one hit and two runs. He struggle to find the strike zone as he didn’t strike anyone out but walked seven batters. Jarren Adam, Chad Michaud, Jake Mayer, and Logan Hold were able to hold off the Dirtbags and close out the first win of the year for UVU.
Utah Valley will look to build off the win as they travel to Albuquerque, N.M. next week February 27, 2015 – March 1, 2015 to take on San Francisco and New Mexico.
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