Gaels rally past Arizona

By Craig Degel

Arizona Daily Wildcat

By the end of the sixth inning of yesterday's baseball game against St. Mary's College (Calif.), the Arizona baseball team was sailing along smoothly with an 8-6 lead. In the top of the seventh, however, the oars fell off the boat.

St. Mary's (2-3) exploded for six runs in the seventh inning off two of the Wildcat bullpen's more dependable relievers, Shawn Barrington and Jason Frierott, on their way to a 14-8 rout of the Wildcats (4-3) before 491 fans last night at Sancet Field.

"We got into a slugfest and they just overcame our leads," UA coach Jerry Kindall said.

Barrington, who before yesterday's game was 2-0 with a 0.90 ERA, relieved starter Clay Crossan (0-0) in the top of the sixth only to allow a triple and a run (charged to Crossan) before Jason Weekly flied to right to end the inning.

After giving up a lead-off single to Brandon Hyde, Barrington struck out Gabe Williams and Ted Millette. But the next batter, Mark Whiley, sent a Barrington offering off the scoreboard in right to tie the score at 8-8. After walking Bryan Hurlbut, Barrington gave way to Jason Frierott.

Frierott walked two batters, one intentionally, and was relieved by Zach Pringle. But Pringle could not stop the offensive onslaught either. The first batter Pringle faced, Kelly Asan, lashed a two-run single and later scored on Jason Weekly's triple. Kirt Kishita (0-0 27.00 ERA) finally stopped the flood of runs when Williams grounded out.

The Gaels got runs in the eighth and ninth innings for the 14-8 final. Dan Lenhart got the win in relief for the Gaels. Frierott (0-1) suffered the loss for the Wildcats.

"It's imperative for us to learn from what we did today," Kindall said. "I saw a let down after the six-run seventh (inning). But it's the first one I've seen all season."

Things did start off well for Arizona.

After a single in the first inning, Scott Kidd stole first and second, scoring on a passed ball. Jeff Gjerde then banged his first homerun of the year.

Dueces were wild for the Wildcats all afternoon. They scored two runs in the first, third, fifth, and sixth innings.

Menno Wickey was hit by a pitch to start the third, and scored on Gjerde's triple. Chris Cooper then got the sacrifice fly to score Gjerde.

Cooper singled to open the fifth and scored on John Powers high-chopper over the first baseman's head. Powers later scored on a suicide squeeze by Colin Porter.

Cooper got his second RBI of the game when he singled in Wickey who earlier doubled in the sixth. Gjerde, who was intentionally walked, scored on Diego Rico's single.

The Wildcats again face St. Mary's today at 2:30 p.m. at Sancet Field. Matt Hendren (0-0, 9.00 ERA) will get the start for Arizona.

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