Dylan Drachler (left) had eight strikeouts and AJ Young went 3-for-3 at the plate against Utah Valley.
March 18, 2014
SALT LAKE CITY - The Utah baseball team broke a 3-3 tie in the seventh inning en route to defeating Utah Valley, 7-3 on Tuesday evening.
Down 3-1, Utah tied the game at 3-3 with a two-run sixth inning. The Utes scored three runs in the seventh to take the lead and added an insurance run in the eighth.
Dylan Drachler was strong in relief on the mound, entering in the sixth inning and striking out eight of the 11 batters he faced. He did not allow a hit or a walk in picking up his first career win. Dalton Carroll earned the start, throwing 5 1/3 innings and allowing three runs (two earned) on three hits with six strikeouts.
AJ Young went 3-for-3 at the plate with two walks to lead the Utes. Max Schuman went 2-for-4 and scored two runs, and Wyler Smith was 1-for-1 with two RBI and two walks. Braden Anderson also drove in two runs.
"I was really impressed with Dylan," Utah head coach Bill Kinneberg said. "He was outstanding today. Eight strikeouts in four innings is really good. He put zeros up and allowed our team to score some runs. AJ had a good night at the plate. He hit some balls hard. Schuman was also a bright spot at the plate. I'm still not happy with our offense. We'll practice hard the next two days and get after it."
Utah hit the ball hard early, with TJ Bennett hitting one to the warning track in left field in the first inning. The Utes loaded the bases with the help of walks in the second inning before a ground out got UVU out of the inning.
The Utes got a run back in the bottom of the fourth, when Schuman reached on an error. He moved to second on a sacrifice bunt off the bat of Cory Hunt and went to third on a single off the bat of Young before scoring on a squeeze play bunt from Smith.
Utah Valley took a 3-1 lead after a one-out triple and wild pitch led to a run.
Utah tied the game at 3-3 in the sixth inning. With the bases loaded with one out after singles from Schuman and Young and Smith reaching after he was hit by a pitch, Cody Scaggari hit a ground ball that appeared to be a double play, but the first baseman dropped the ball on the play and allowed Schuman to score. Anderson followed with an RBI single to tie the game for the Utes.
With Drachler dominating on the mound, Utah and took control of the game with a three-run seventh. Young hit an RBI single with two runners on and Smith beat out an infield single that also allowed a run to score. Scaggari beat out a deep infield single to load the bases and Anderson hit a sacrifice fly for the third run of the inning, giving Utah a 6-3 lead.
Utah added an insurance run in the ninth. Bennett and Schuman each singled to put runners on the corners, and Bennett scored off a ground out.
The Utes travel to Oregon this weekend, facing the 12th-ranked Ducks in Eugene with a three-game series beginning on Friday, March 21.