Corey Shimada and the Utes saw UNLV come back for a 7-5 win in 11 innings Friday.
March 30, 2007
SALT LAKE CITY - Five first-inning runs were enough to get the University of Utah baseball team into extra innings against UNLV Friday at Franklin Covey Field. Those five runs weren't enough to stop the Rebels as the Utes dropped a 7-5, 11-inning decision.
Utah (9-16, 2-2 MWC) knocked around UNLV starter Ryan Tabor in the bottom of the first. The Utes put five runs on the board on five hits and one error in one-third of an inning against Tabor. But Kevin Skogley took over for the Rebels, getting UNLV out of the frame and shutting the Utes down for the next 7 2/3 innings.
UNLV (13-19, 2-2 MWC) eventually tied things up 5-5. But Utah had a chance to win it in the bottom of the ninth. The Utes got three straight singles from Mike Mitchell, Nate Burnham and Corey Shimada to load the bases with nobody out. But the Rebels Adam Moser got out of the jam. He induced a ground ball from Jay Brossman, which forced Mitchell at home. Pinch hitter Eric King and John Welsh then each harmlessly popped up to third base, sending the game into extra innings.
It was UNLV which took advantage of a bases-loaded situation to take the lead in the 11th. Against Ute closer Brett Bruneel, the Rebels' Blake Gailen walked and moved to second on a balk. An intentional walk to Effren Navarro, Jr. put runners at first and second. A double steal left first base open. Another intentional walk left the bases loaded and one out. Pinch hitter Kyle Kretchmer struck out for the second out. But Michael Brenly laced a single to center on a 2-2 count to put UNLV up 7-5.
Utah went in order in the 11th.
The Rebels got back into the game in the second and third innings against Utah starter Lucas Trinnaman. The Rebels got a leadoff double from Navarro, who later came around to score, in the second. In the third , Calvin Beamon led off with a solo home run to right. Two more runs came across to pull UNLV within one, 5-4. Trinnaman was yanked in favor of reliever Kerr Foster, who got out of the third inning and tossed 4 2/3 scoreless innings.
Four Utes were 2-for-5 in the contest, including Burnham and Shimada, who each scored a single run. Beamon did much of the damage for UNLV, going 4-for-6 with one run and two RBIs. Bruneel (0-1) took the loss, allowing three runs in four innings of work. Moser (4-1) hurled three scoreless frames for UNLV to pick up the victory.
Game two of the three-game set is slated for 1 p.m. Saturday.