Wildcats lose regional opener

Arizona lost its regional opener to Seton Hall and is now one loss away from elimination.

All has not gone on as planned for the Arizona Wildcats, as they entered regional play as the heavy favorites to take down the Seton Hall Pirates, who are making just their first tournament appearance since 2001.

But Friday afternoon, it was Arizona (0-1) who had the look of a team that didn't know how to win on the big stage, looking all too similar too last postseason's squad. Seton Hall's move to start Jon Prosinski on the mound instead of usual ace Joe DiRocco paid off, as the one time number three starter went all nine against the Wildcats, allowing no runs on six hits.

What was expected to be a pitcher's duel down to the very end turned into anything but as the Pirates took advantage of every gift Arizona gave them, including a four run 4th inning where a throwing error by Jett Bandy allowed two runs to come in and score with one out.

While Heyer eventually got out of the inning after the error, the damage had already been done, and only lasted until the 7th inning. He surrendered all four runs in 6.2 innings, while only collecting one punch out. It was one of the ace's worst starts of the year.

The combination of Bryce Bandilla, Tyler Hale, Vincent Littleman, and Matt Chaffee did the job out of the bullpen for the Wildcats, tossing a combined 2.1 innings of scoreless baseball, but the Arizona bats couldn't come through in the limited chances it had, as the offense left seven runners on base in the contest.

But the bottom line is, the Wildcats really never had a shot this one, as they were never even once able to get a runner to third base and didn't have a single extra base hit on the day.

Arizona now needs to regroup to avoid losing back-to-back games, something it hasn't done since April 24. The two- seeded Wildcats will play four-seeded Wright State Saturday morning at 10:35 a.m PT as they try to keep their season alive.


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