By Justin St. Germain
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Thursday April 24, 2003
The way things are going lately, the Arizona baseball team is probably glad its non-conference schedule ends Monday.
Tuesday night, the Wildcats (28-15) were shut out for the first time all season in a 4-0 upset loss to Grand Canyon (30-23), eight days after losing in the ninth inning at home to their last non-conference foe ÷ and Monday's opponent ÷ Sacramento State.
The GCU Antelopes, a NCAA Division II team, collected just four hits in the game, but they came at the right times and plated four runs. The Antelope pitching staff did the rest, holding the Arizona lineup to just three hits while striking out 14.
"They got real juiced up to play us, because we're a D-I team," junior Brian Anderson said. "They just outplayed us. Sometimes you've just got to swallow your pride, shake their hands and tip your hats to them."
Grand Canyon pulled away in the sixth with three runs off of Wildcat reliever Chris Frey on a pair of walks and two-RBI single by Chris Rock after the runners advanced on a pair of wild pitches. UA starter Joe Little (4-3) was credited with the loss after giving up one run on two hits in three innings.
Arizona had just one extra-base hit in the game, a third-inning double off the bat of catcher Richard Mercado in his only at-bat.
The Wildcats travel to Stanford, Calif., this weekend to face the Pacific-10 Conference-leading Cardinal in a series of much more gravity for the second-place Arizona team than its Tuesday tilt. The Wildcats trail Stanford by two games entering tomorrow's 6 p.m. opener.
"I don't think (Tuesday's loss) fazes us," Anderson said. "It's not going to keep us out of a regional or keep us from going to Omaha. It hurts our pride a little, but that's about it."