March 27, 2010
OREM, Utah - Jake Rickenbach had his third straight 4-for-5 performance but overall Utah Valley fell flat on Saturday, dropping its home series against Gonzaga after an 8-3 loss in the rubber match.
After the teams combined for 73 runs and 80 hits over the series' first two games - Gonzaga (10-13) won 23-12 Thursday before a 21-17 UVU win on Friday - there were just 15 hits combined on Saturday.
The Wolverines (7-10) out-hit the Bulldogs 10-to-5 but allowed eight walks, five hit batters and committed two costly errors on the afternoon. Seven of Gonzaga's eight runs that scored reached base via walk or hit-by-pitch and two of the runs were unearned.
Rickenbach finished the weekend 12-for-15 with a home run, double and three batted in. His home run - a solo shot to left - came in the third inning of Saturday's game.
Mark Castellitto, who hit three home runs for the Bulldogs in the series opener on Thurday, drove in four runs and put the game out of reach with a three-run home run in the top of the eighth. Castellitto hit four homers and drove in 13 runs in the series.
Gonzaga scored twice in the first and once in the second to take an early 3-0 lead. After Rickenbach's home run got the Wolverines on the board, the Bulldogs added an unearned run in the fourth and another run in sixth on a hit batter with the bases loaded.
The Wolverines made a big threat in the bottom of the sixth. Rickenbach singled and Sage Thorpe doubled before Jace Brinkerhoff singled Rickenbach home to make it 5-2. Billy Burgess then drew a walk to load the bases and Chris Benson, who upped his hit streak to 15 games, singled home Thorpe to get UVU with two runs.
Gonzaga then went to Tyler Olson who struck out pinch hitter Kevin Arendse and Goose Kallunki and got Jason Zundel to hit a soft bouncer out in front of home plate to keep the Wolverines off the board and preserve the two-run lead.
Olson picked up the save after throwing four scoreless innings and striking out six while allowing just three hits. Starter Jeremy Stumetz (2-1) got the win after allowing three runs on seven hits in five innings.
For Utah Valley, Kade Andrus (0-1) took the loss in his first start after allowing two earned runs (four total) in 3 2/3 innings.
Utah Valley will play five in-state games beginning at Utah on Tuesday at 6 p.m. The Wolverines also face Southern Utah in a four-game series starting Thursday at 6 p.m. UVU is 5-0 vs. in-state schools so far this season.