Reno, Nev. – The University of Nevada (9-13) held off a ninth inning rally from Utah Valley University (6-16) to defeat the Wolverines by a score of 7-5 in the first game of a four-game series at Peccole Park in Reno, Friday night. With the victory the Wolf Pack improved to 9-13 while UVU dropped to 6-16 on the season.
The Wolverines took advantage of some sloppy Pack defense to score the first three runs of the game and led 3-0 heading into the bottom of the fifth inning. Nevada’s bats came alive in the bottom of the fifth as nine players hit in the inning and four scored to put the Pack on top 4-3. Right fielder Brett Hart scored two of the runs with his single while shortstop Kevin Rodland’s sacrifice fly and catcher Travis Simas’ single scored the other two runs in the inning.
In the bottom of the sixth inning third baseman Tyson Jaquez’ second home run of the season scored left fielder Nick Melino who reached after being hit by a pitch and it was 6-3. Center fielder Waylen Sing Chow walked in the bottom of the seventh moved to second base on a sacrifice bunt from Rodland and scored on first baseman Shaun Kort’s single to score an insurance run.
UVU scored a run in the eighth inning after second baseman Ryan Jones doubled and eventually scored on a single by pinch hitter Josh Hinckley. The game got interesting in the top of the ninth inning when the first two Wolverine hitters reached base. Following an out, a single by shortstop Jake Rickenbach loaded the bases for Jones. Jones hit the ball to Rodland for what looked like would be a game ending double play but the throw from second baseman Matt Bowman to first base was wide as a run crossed the plate. Wolverine third baseman Jace Brinkerhoff’s ground out to short ended the game as the Pack held on for the 7-5 victory.
Lefty Brock Stassi (3-3) earned his third win of the season allowing four runs, two earned on four hits and struck out five in seven innings of work. Daniel Tinlin (1) recorded his first save of the season retiring the final two hitters of the game. UVU starter Kole Mickolio (0-2) gave up four runs on five hits in four innings on the mound and dropped to 0-2 on the season.
Kort (2-for-3,RBI), Jaquez(2-for-4,2R,2RBI), designated hitter Matt Langenfeld (2-for-4,R) and Simas (2-for-3,RBI) had two hits apiece for the Pack. Jaquez and Hart tied for game-high honors with two RBI each.
Seven different players had a hit for the Wolverines in the game. Jones, Brinkerhoff and Hinckley had an RBI each.
The two teams will play a doubleheader on Saturday afternoon with first pitch of game one scheduled for 1:00 p.m. Game two will follow 45 minutes after the conclusion of the first contest.