Arizona puts on a clinic against Hornets

Jerod Moreno

Sacramento State’s baseball team struggled in all three phases of the game during Saturday’s meeting with Arizona, as it was routed 23-1 Saturday afternoon.

Sac State starting pitcher Grant Kukuk had a short outing Saturday afternoon. Kukuk completed just 1.2 innings while giving up six earned runs on five hits.

As a team, the Hornets (8-5) gave up 23 runs on 24 hits and committed three errors. Eleven of the 23 hits allowed were extra base hits, including seven doubles, three triples and a home run.

Arizona (10-4) exploded with offense in the bottom of the second inning. The Wildcats strung together six hits for six runs. The hits included a double each from senior second baseman Cody Ramer, senior first baseman Ryan Aguilar and sophomore designated hitter JJ Matijevic. The inning was crowned with a two-run home run by junior third baseman Bobby Dalbec.

Arizona kept piling on the runs as they added three more in the bottom of the fourth inning. After a quick first out by Sac State, senior right fielder Zach Gibbons was hit by a pitch which started the rally for the Wildcats. Gibbons stole second and scored from second base on a sacrifice fly ball by Matijevic.

Dalbec followed with another hit-by-pitch and was moved to third base on a single up the middle by freshman catcher Cesar Salazar. Louis Boyd capped the inning off with a two RBI single through the left side of the infield.

Arizona was relentless with their efforts and tacked on another three runs in the bottom of the fifth inning. Back-to-back singles by sophomore center fielder Jared Oliva and Ramer set up Aguilar for an RBI single through the right side of the infield. Gibbons drew a walk and loaded the bases as Salazar hit a two RBI single up the middle to score Aguilar and Gibbons. This widened the Wildcat lead to 12 runs.

Arizona matched its second inning performance and posted another six-spot in the bottom of the sixth inning. The Wildcats scored these six runs off of six hits, four of which were extra base hits including back to back triples by Ramer and Oliva. The Hornets also committed their second error of the game which caused them to give up another run. The Wildcats lengthened the lead to 18 at this point.

Sac State was able to erase its zero on the scoreboard as they scored a run in the top of the seventh inning. James Outman drew a two-out walk as Josh Egan pinch hit for catcher Gunner Pollman and followed with a single to center field. Outman and Egan advanced to second and third base on a passed ball where Brandon Hunley hit an RBI infield single to second base.

Arizona never let its foot off the gas as five more runs were added onto the scoreboard in the bottom of the seventh inning. The Wildcats were able to capitalize off of a leadoff error and followed with four hits, including a double and a triple and a sacrifice fly ball.

Bronson Grubbs led the Hornet offense going two for three with a double. Egan was a perfect two for two for the Hornets. Hunley was one for four with Sac State’s sole RBI, while Chris Lewis and Kody Reynolds also added a hit.

The concluding game of the three-game series against Arizona will take place Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m.