May 18, 2014
PHOENIX - Utah Valley University closed out its first Western Athletic Conference regular season, dropping a 9-5 contest at Grand Canyon University on Sunday at Brazell Stadium. The Wolverines, 25-28 overall, finished 16-11 in their first WAC campaign while the Antelopes, 30-21 overall, were 19-8 in league play.
UVU finished in fourth place during the regular season and will be the No. 3 seed in this week's WAC Tournament at Cubs Park in Mesa. The Wolverines will face New Mexico State, the No. 6 seed, on Wednesday at 7 p.m. PT/8 p.m. MT.
In Sunday's rubber match, Chad De La Guerra drove in five runs and hit a three-run home run for the second straight day in helping the `Lopes win the series. Kade Andrus was 2-for-3 for UVU and scored the first run of the game when he stole home in the first on `Lopes starter Ethan Evanko's pick off attempt at first.
Grand Canyon led 5-1 in the fifth when the Wolverines chipped into the lead, getting two in the fifth and one more in the sixth. De La Guerra, who drove in nine runs in the series, pushed the lead back to four in the sixth on the home run to right.
Colby Croft had a pair of RBIs for UVU for the second straight day. His two-run double on Saturday tied the game and was part of a comeback that had the Wolverines score nine runs in the seventh inning of a 9-7 win.
That win kept hope of the No. 2 seed and a bye in the WAC Tournament alive. Those hopes were dashed though when Texas-Pan American clinched that spot with an earlier win on Sunday, sweeping its series at Northern Colorado.
If the Wolverines win on Wednesday, they'll face UTPA on Thursday at 3 p.m. PT/4 p.m. MT. A loss would put UVU in the first elimination game, on Thursday at 11 a.m. PT. Grand Canyon, which finished second in the WAC behind regular season champion Sacramento State, is not eligible for the tournament as it is in the midst of a four-year reclassification from Division II.