Posted: Mar 04, 2018
SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Santa Clara baseball completed the series sweep against Utah with a pair of one run wins in the Sunday doubleheader to improve to 8-3 on the season, doubling the number of non-conference wins from last season.
In game one of the twin bill, the Broncos' 3-4-5 hitters drove in all four runs to lift Santa Clara to a 4-3 win. In the night cap, the Broncos completed the sweep on a Niko Holm two-run walk-off single in the 12th inning for a 6-5 come-from-behind win.
Game 1: Santa Clara 4 – Utah 3
The middle of the Santa Clara (7-3) lineup combined to go 4-for-11 and drove in all four runs in the 4-3 win.
Down 1-0 in the bottom of the fourth, Jake MacNichols (1-for-4, RBI), batting in the fifth spot for the Broncos, drove home Grant Meylan (2 runs) with a double to tie the game up, 1-1.
In the fifth, the Broncos went up 3-1 when cleanup hitter Jake Brodt (1-for-3, 2 RBIs, BB) doubled in Meylan and John Cresto.
Utah closed it to a one run game in the seventh on a Rykker Tom single off Bronco reliever Penn Murfee. Oliver Dunn who led off the inning with a walk off of Bronco pitcher Freddie Erlandson scored to cut the Bronco lead to 3-2. With runners in scoring position, Murfee shut the door on the Utes, getting David Delorfice to groundout to the pitcher to keep it a 3-2 lead for the Broncos.
Cresto (2-for-4, RBI, R) added an insurance run for the Broncos in the home half of the seventh on a single to center scoring Austin Reyes (1 run) from second to make it 4-2 in favor of Santa Clara. Reyes got into scoring position when he led off the inning with a walk and advanced to second on a wild pitch.
The insurance run proved to be needed as Utah scored an unearned run in the ninth off of Santa Clara closer Eric Lex on a Reyes fielding error. Holding onto a 4-3 lead, with two-outs and runners at the corners, Lex struck out pinch hitter Braden DeBenedictis to end the game and earn his fourth save of the season.
Five Bronco pitchers combined to strand 14 Utah base runners on base.
Freddie Erlandson (2-0) picked up the win with Utes starter Tanner Thomas (0-1) taking the loss.
Game 2: Santa Clara 6 – Utah 5
Santa Clara came back three times in the night cap, with the last one coming in the bottom of the 12th inning on a Niko Holm two-run, walk-off single to win 6-5, completing the doubleheader and series sweep of the Utes.
Trailing 5-4 heading into the bottom of the 12th, the Broncos loaded the bases on a pair of singles by Joe Becht (3-for-5, 2 RBIs, 2 runs) and John Cresto (3-for-6, R) along a walk to Jake Brodt (2 BB). With two outs, Holm (1-for-6, 2 RBIs) sent a sharp single through the left side scoring Becht and Cresto for the second walk-off win in as many weekends for the Broncos.
Freshman Cade Negley earned his first win as a Bronco, pitching the last five frames allowing just one run. Negley who came in the eight inning, showed his grit getting out of jams leaving seven Ute base runners stranded in his five innings of work.
In the ninth, Negley escaped a bases loaded situation when he struck out Rykker Tom to end the inning.
Earlier in the game, Santa Clara erased deficits of one and three runs in the third and seventh innings.
Down 4-1 in the seventh, Becht's triple to deep center brought home Lucas Eliason (1 run) and Jason Dicochea (1-for-5, R) to cut the Utah lead to 4-3. Becht would score the tying run on a wild pitch by Josh Tedeschi.
From the eight inning out, it was a pitcher's dual between Tedeschi and Negley. The Utes lefty threw 6 1/3 innings before allowing Holm's game winner to be saddled with the loss.
The Broncos will next play on Thursday night against Sacramento State as part of a two game home and home series with the Hornets. The two schools will play at Schott Stadium on Thursday and Friday before playing at Sacramento State over the weekend. First pitch on Thursday is scheduled for 6 p.m. PT.
HIGHLIGHT | Grant Meylan makes a leaping catch at the track in the sixth inning during game one of yesterday's doubleheader sweep against Utah! FULL HIGHLIGHTS ▶️ https://t.co/rzvgcR4gpT #StampedeTogether #SCUBroncos pic.twitter.com/ZhUmXY1gCc— Santa Clara Baseball (@SCU_Baseball) March 6, 2018