By Craig Degel
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Last season, it took the Arizona baseball team 24 regular-season games to compile four victories. This year's Wildcat team did it in five, earning a win in typical fashion Friday Ä by scoring the tying run in the eighth inning and the winning run in the 10th.
In Friday's game, Arizona's Diego Rico hit a one-out RBI single in the bottom of the 10th to give the Wildcats (4-2) a 2-1 win over Brigham Young in front of 852 fans at Sancet Field. The Wildcats, who beat the Cougars on Thursday, were unable to sweep the three-game series after falling 8-4 Saturday.
The story of Friday's game was Arizona starter Ryan Frace. Frace went all 10 innings, scattering eight hits, striking out 11 and allowing only three walks.
"This makes me extremely happy," said Frace, a senior right-hander. "I was thinking if I went the complete game these guys would clutch up and win it."
UA coach Jerry Kindall was understandably thrilled about Frace's performance.
"That's one of the best pitching performances we've had in the last several years," Kindall said.
BYU's only run came in the top of the sixth when leadoff hitter Jared Bills reached on an error and scored two batters later on David Bayles' single to right field.
In the bottom of the eighth, designated hitter Russ Brown got his second hit of the game and scored when Scott Kidd reached on an error by Cougar first baseman Bayles, who dropped a throw that would have ended the inning.
John Powers started the
bottom of the 10th with a walk but was forced out at second when the next batter, Jake Thrower, reached on a fielder's choice. After a single by Brown, Thrower took third on a wild pitch to set the stage for Rico.
In its loss to Brigham Young (1-4) Saturday, Arizona committed seven errors.
"The better the player you are, the more chances you have to commit errors, because you get more (fielding) opportunities," Kindall said.
The Cougar bats banged out 16 hits for eight runs off the combined pitching of Ben White (0-1), Kirt Kishita Ä who made his first appearance since arthroscopic surgery in 1993 Ä and Zach Pringle.
Bryan Swapp got the save in relief of winning pitcher Bryan Knoll.
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St Mary's (Calif.) College (1-2) will be in town today for the first of a two-game series at Sancet Field. Clay Crossan, who worked 2/3 of an inning and gave up two runs in his first appearance, will get his first start of the season for Arizona.
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