Krukow Homers Twice As Pack Hold Off Santa Clara 9-8

Reno, Nev. - University of Nevada(28-22) senior designated hitter Baker Krukow homered twice as the Wolf Pack held off Santa Clara(24-26) 9-8 in a nonconference game at Peccole Park in Reno, Nev. Tuesday night.  With the victory the Pack improved to 28-22 while the Broncos dropped to 24-26 on the season.

Krukow hit his second home run leading off the bottom of the eighth inning to put the Pack on top 9-6 and it proved to be the winning run as the Broncos scored two in the top of the ninth inning and the bases were loaded when the final out was recorded.  SC catcher Tommy Medica was hit by Pack reliever Ben Colton as the top of the ninth began.  A high pop fly between home, third, and the pitchers mound by first baseman Ryan Conan dropped for a single.  Colton picked up the ball and attempted to get the out at second base but the ball went into center field as both runners advanced a base to second and third.  A sacrifice fly by designated hitter Carl Bacon scored the first run and Conan advanced to third base.  A ground out to third resulted in the second out of the inning.  Left fielder Evan LeBlanc followed with a single to left field and it was a one run game at 9-8.  Pinch hitter Geoff Klein reached on an infield single and shortstop Jon Karcich was hit by pitch to load the bases.  Next to the plate was center fielder Matt Long who entered his final bat with a home run, two doubles, and three RBI in the game but he ground out to second base on the first pitch he saw and the Pack had escaped with the one run victory.

SC scored two runs in the top of the first inning as the first four hitters of the game reached base.  Long homered to start the game and right fielder Nathan Faulkner was then hit by pitch.  Consecutive singles by Medica and Conan scored the second run. The Pack turned a 5-4-3 double play to end the inning and keep the Broncos from adding to their lead.

Nevada tied the game with two in the bottom of the first.  Center fielder Jason Sadoian was hit by pitch to get things started and moved to second base on a ground ball where he scored on first baseman Shaun Kort's double.  Catcher Konrad Schmidt followed with a double and the game was tied at 2-2.

The Pack put together a three-run bottom of the fourth to take the lead 5-2.  Sadoian's sacrifice fly scored right fielder Cody Fierro with the first run of the inning.  Third baseman Jason Rodriguez doubled home shortstop Chris Siewert and second baseman David Ciarlo.  Fierro and Siewert reached after being hit by pitch and Ciarlo singled to get on base.

Faulkner hit a solo home run for the Broncos in the top of the fifth inning to get Santa Clara within two at 5-3.  Pack designated hitter Baker Krukow got the run back hitting his first home run at Peccole Park this season leading off the bottom of the fifth inning.  The Pack tacked on two more runs to make the score 8-3.  Ciarlo and Rodriguez both had RBI singles in the inning.

SC scored a run in the top of the seventh and two more in the top of the eighth to make it a two-run game at 8-6.  In the seventh Long doubled and scored on Faulkner’s single to account for the run.  Long doubled home both runs in the top of the eighth to draw the Broncos within two.

Krukow hit his second home run of the game in the bottom of the eighth inning to give the Pack a three-run cushion which proved to be the winning run as they held off the Broncos 9-8.

Ciarlo(3-for-5,2R,RBI) and Rodriguez(3-for-5,2R,RBI) led the Pack with three hits each.  Krukow(2-for-5,2R,2RBI) hit two solo home runs including what proved to be the game winner in the bottom of the eighth.  Rodriguez drove in a team-high three on the night.

Long(3-for-6,2R,3RBI), Faulkner(3-for-4,2R,2RBI), and LeBlanc(3-for-5,R,RBI) had three hits each for the Broncos as they totaled 16 in the game.  Long drove in three and Faulkner two on the night.

Jordan Salazar(2-0) the second Pack pitcher of the night got the win allowing one run on three this in 1.2 innings on the mound.  Colton(1) earned his first save of the season pitching the final 1.1 innings of the game.  SC starter Sean O’Neill(2-2) was tagged with the loss allowing five runs on six hits in 3.2 innings of action.

Nevada hosts Hawai`i in its final regular season home series Saturday, Sunday, and Monday with first pitch slated for 6:00 p.m. each day.