Utah Valley's 32-game winning streak came to an end in an 11-10 slug-fest Tuesday against Utah, in front of 4,739 fans in Orem. The Utes stormed back from a 7-1 deficit to carry an 11-7 lead into the bottom of the ninth, but the Wolverines fought back for three in the final frame (highlighted by national RBI leader Goose Kallunki's two-run single) before Tyler Wagner struck out Alex Exon with runners at second and third to end it. UVU's streak ended two wins shy of tying the Division I record (set by Texas in 1977 and matched by Florida Atlantic in 1999). UVU's 32-game streak is tied for third-longest (Arizona State did it in 1972 and Fresno State matched it in 1988).
"I'm just very proud with the way our guys competed to the end," Wolverines coach Eric Madsen said afterward. "Our players just don't quit. They always seem to find a way to win. It didn't happen tonight but that doesn't take anything away from what this team has done and what we hope to still do."
Whether Utah Valley can get into a regional without the streak intact is doubtful, because its RPI was No. 67 heading into the day, and its remaining schedule won't help boost it. The Wolverines likely needed something truly unprecedented—like the longest winning streak in NCAA history—to overcome their weak Great West schedule.
Top 25 Showdowns
• No. 11 UCLA scored three runs in the top of the ninth to break a 3-3 tie and beat No. 8 Cal State Fullerton, 6-3. The Bruins swept the two-game season series against the Titans and have won four of the last five meetings between the two rivals. Shane Zeille's two-run single highlighted the three-run ninth-inning rally.
Top 25 Upsets
• Brandon Miller hit a pair of two-run homers—bringing his nation-leading total to 20 long balls—to lead Samford's 15-hit barrage in a 12-7 upset against No. 3 Florida. The Bulldogs jumped on Johnny Magliozzi (1.2 IP, 7 H, 5 ER) for five runs in the first two innings and never looked back. Miller became the first player in Samford history to hit 20 home runs in a season.
• Murray State broke a 3-3 tie with four runs in the eighth to beat No. 4 Kentucky, 7-3. Jacob Rhodes' three-run double highlighted the eighth-inning rally against Alex Phillips, the bullpen stalwart who has given up eight runs (four earned) in his last two-plus innings for UK.
• Arkansas State knocked off No. 25 Mississippi, 10-5. Claude Johnson went 4-for-4 with three runs to lead the Red Wolves' 14-hit attack. The Rebels needed a very strong finish to have a chance at hosting a regional, and Tuesday's loss was certainly a setback.
• Bubble-dwelling Indiana State was on the verge of a big RPI win against No. 15 Purdue, but the Boilermakers tied the game on Sean McHugh's pinch-hit homer in the ninth and won it an inning later, 2-1. Kyle Rupe (6.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R) turned in a strong start for the Sycamores, who lead the Missouri Valley Conference heading into a big showdown against Missouri State this weekend.
• Christian Stringer had two hits and three RBIs in support of Andrew Benak (7.1 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 9 K) in Rice's 5-0 win at Southland Conference regular-season champion Sam Houston State. Former weekend starter Cody Dickson (4 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 4 BB, 3 K) started and lost for the Bearkats.
• Daniel Mengden (7 IP, 7 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 5 K) picked up his second collegiate victory in Texas A&M's 5-1 win against Texas State, whose at-large fortunes are sagging.
• Texas Christian completed a sweep of its season series against Oklahoma for the first time since 2004, winning 1-0 behind Brandon Finnegan (7 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 7 K). Jason Coats doubled home a run in the first inning against Dillon Overton (9 IP, 6 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 5 K), and neither team would score thereafter in a splendidly pitched game.
• Kavin Keyes had four RBIs to lead the Oregon State offense in a 12-4 win against Portland. The Beavers have won 15 straight against the Pilots.
• Daniel Aldrich (4-for-7, 2 R, 3 RBI, HR) capped a big day with a walk-off single in the 12th to propel College of Charleston to a big 9-8 win against Coastal Carolina. Gunnar Heidt also had four hits for the Cougars, who rapped out 19 hits in total.
• Logan Jernigan (6.2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 3 BB, 8 K) turned in a strong start for North Carolina State in a 7-0 win against UNC Greensboro. The Wolfpack will need Jernigan to pitch like that more often in the postseason, because he owns one of the best arms on their team but has been erratic during the course of his freshman year. Another Wolfpack freshman, Trea Turner, was thrown out trying to steal by a catcher for the first time all season; he is 50-for-53 in stolen base attempts, having been caught stealing by a pitcher twice before.
• Georgia Tech's borderline at-large case took a blow with a 4-3 loss at Mercer. The Bears came from behind with two runs in the eighth against Dusty Isaacs.
• Another team that could ill afford a loss Tuesday was Long Beach State, which fell 5-3 against Pepperdine. The Waves scored three in the first behind Matt Maurer (6 IP, 8 H, 3 R, 2 ER) and never looked back. The Dirtbags are just 25-24 overall and falling into a hole in the at-large race.
Comments will be monitored prior to being added to the site. Comments that include profanity or personal attacks or other inappropriate comments or material will be rejected. Additionally, entries that are unsigned or contain "signatures" by someone other than the actual author will be removed.
We have chosen to open up commenting to everyone, so comment away! We want to hear from each and every one of you! Leave a comment.
About This Blog
Syndicate This Blog
Search This Blog