While the Arizona basketball team still continues to take center stage in the Tucson community, this night belonged to the Wildcat baseball team. The Bat Cats opened the Pac-10 season with a 5-2 victory over No. 6 Arizona State at Packard Stadium Friday night.
Arizona fell behind early in the 3rd inning after ASU's Joey DeMichele knocked in the game's first run with a two out triple. The Sun Devils would also tack on to another run in the 4th frame thanks to a Matt Newman solo shot to lead off the inning.
After the 4th inning blast, Arizona's Kurt Heyer got himself into a rhythm on the mound, giving up only one hit the rest of the night. He eventually went 7.1 innings of two run baseball, while scattering six hits and punching out eight.
In the 6th inning the Wildcats started to take advantage of Sun Devil mistakes, as Jett Bandy led the inning off with a double down the left field line and later scored on an ASU wild pitch to give Arizona its first run of the game.
The Wildcats continued to force the issue in the seventh, after Seth Mejias-Brean beat out an infield roller to third to start off the inning, followed by a Bryce Ortega walk and a Joey Rickard double to give the Cats the 3-2 lead heading to the bottom of the 7th frame. ASU starting pitcher Kramer Champlin was pulled after giving up the three runs in 6.1 innings, but by then it was too late.
The Arizona offense would end up scoring two more insurance runs in the final two frames, while reliever Matt Chaffee came in to finish the job pitching wise for the Cats, throwing 1.2 innings, while allowing zero runs on one hit and no walks.
Arizona will try and clinch its first conference series victory tomorrow night, when it sends 5-0 Kyle Simon to the mound.
Wildcats take first game
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