Arizona Wildcats Fall to UCLA In Extra Innings
UCLA scored a pair of runs in the ninth inning and one more in the 10th to secure an 8-7 extra-inning win over Arizona on Sunday afternoon at Jackie Robinson Stadium.
With Arizona leading 7-5, Kyle Cuellar singed through the right side of the infield with two outs and two strikes in the ninth to score a pair of runs and tie the game at seven. Landon Faulkner came on for the Cats and got the team out of the inning with a lineout to second base.
But the Cats couldn't scratch any runs across in the top of the 10th and UCLA plated the winning run on a wild pitch from Alfonso Rivas in the bottom half. The loss dropped the Cats to 15-4 on the season. With a pair of wins in Saturday's doubleheader, the Cats still managed to win their first series at UCLA since a three-game sweep in 2005.
Sunday's game was a back-and-forth affair that featured a stellar outing from starting pitcher Rio Gomez and several clutch hits from the Cats.
For the second straight game, UCLA jumped out in front, plating a run in the first off of Gomez. But similar to the Game 2 victory, the Cats had no problem coming from behind.
Trailing 1-0 in the third, Cesar Salazar led the inning off with a single through the right side. Kyle Lewis bunted him over to second to put a runner into scoring position with one out for freshman second baseman Cameron Cannon.
Cannon laced a double down the left field line to plate Salazar from second and knot the game at a run apiece. Two batters later, Alfonso Rivas gave the Cats the lead with a two-out single to right to score Cannon and make it 2-1 in favor of the Wildcats.
Gomez needed just eight pitches to breeze through the third and preserve the lead for the Cats. In the fourth, his offense would give him some more breathing room to work with.
Jared Oliva led the inning off with a double and then scored a batter later when Nick Quintana reached on a two-base error on a deep fly ball to left field. Quintana moved over to second on a fly ball from Salazar and scored a batter later on a sacrifice fly from Lewis.
Gomez continued to settle in, tossing up zeroes in the fourth, fifth and six, retiring nine in a row at one point. The Bruins finally got to Gomez again in the seventh when Ryan Kreidler hit a two-out, two-run home run to left field to cut it to 4-3.
But the Cats used the long ball themselves to stretch the lead back to three. Quintana started it off with a leadoff solo home run to left to make it 5-3. It was Quintana's second career home run and second straight weekend series with a homer.
The next batter, Cesar Salazar, followed with his first career home run, hammering a pitch from Jon Olson over the wall in right-centerfield to make it 6-3. It was Arizona's fourth home run of the weekend against the Bruins.
UCLA scored two in the eighth to cut it to 6-5. Reliever Cameron Ming got a pair of strikeouts to end the inning and keep the Cats in front by one. Arizona made it 7-5 in the top of the ninth when Oliva hit a sacrifice fly to score Rivas.
But Cuellar tied it in the ninth and the wild pitch in the 10th won it.
Rivas, Quintana, Salazar and Cannon all had two-hit games in the loss and six different players drove a run in for the Cats.
Gomez went seven innings, giving up three runs on five hits, while striking out six and walking one.