March 22, 2006
San Francisco, CA - The Comeback Kids rallied again as USF defeated Utah Valley State 7-6 at Benedetti Diamond on Wednesday afternoon. The Dons (13-12) have come from behind three times in their last five games, and the win marks their third series victory in a row. The loss for UVS drops the Wolverines to 6-15 and is their third consecutive loss on their West Coast road trip.
USF started big as they plated three runs in the bottom of the first. After two walks and a single, senior outfielder Stefan Gartrell hit a slow roller to UVS' junior shortstop Eli Slesk who couldn't decide where to throw the ball and all runners were safe. On the next play, sophomore first baseman Mitchell Bialosky hit a sacrifice fly to right field to score senior short stop Andrew Smith. Gartrell was caught in a run-down between first and second, but slide safely into second as Slesk threw out junior centerfielder Scott Cousins trying to score on the play. Junior left fielder Daniel Morales then singled in Gartrell.
Utah Valley State had their big blow in the third as they scored four runs to tie the game. After an RBI single by Slesk, sophomore first baseman Adam Openshaw homered just over the right field fence, scoring three. The Wolverines added two more in the fifth to take the lead. Openshaw had an RBI single and junior designated hitter Dan Bulow had a sacrifice fly.
In good fashion, the Dons rallied to take the lead in the eighth. Designated hitter, junior Chris Bacigalupi walked and was replaced on the basepaths by speedy freshman George Lujan. The speed wouldn't be necessary as freshman second baseman Zach Kim hit his second homerun of the season, a two run shot, in nearly the same spot as UVS' Openshaw. The lead would hold as the Wolverines were dropped in order in the top of the ninth.
Junior right-hander John Quine got the win, his second of the season, pitching three scoreless innings of relief, allowing only one hit.
USF returns to action this weekend as the Dons travel to Tulsa, Oklahoma to take on Oral Roberts. Friday's game begins at 7:00 PM.