Sunken Diamond Field hosted the University of Utah baseball team and the third-ranked Stanford Cardinal over the weekend. The three-game series went to Stanford, who won all three games.
Oliver Dunn led the Utes offensively, going 2-4 with two RBI in game one of the series. Kyle Robeniol and Zac McCleve combined for eight strikeouts on the day.
In game one, Zack Moeller got the Utes going in the first with a double to the left field wall scoring Dunn. Utah’s defense wasn’t able to keep the Cardinal off of the scoreboard for long, as Stanford tied the game 1-1.
The Utes regained the lead in the second inning when Dunn was walked with the bases loaded. Stanford once again knotted things up in the bottom half of the inning. Robeniol chalked up three strikeouts his first time through the Cardinal lineup.
Will Matthiessen drove in his second RBI on the day, giving Stanford their first lead of the game. The Utes would hang around in the top of the fourth as Briley Knight stepped to the plate. Knight doubled to the gap in left-center plating Matt Richardson to keep the Utes lurking.
Offensively, the Utes bats went silent through the next five innings. Stanford’s bats, on the other hand, seemed to come to life. The Cardinal drove in four runs in the fifth and seventh innings to go ahead 7-3.
Utah wasn’t going to go down without a fight. With two outs in the ninth inning, Erick Migueles doubled bringing in Dunn and cutting Stanford’s lead to three. Eventually, the Utes would fall 7-4 in game one.
After falling behind five runs early in game two, Dunn continued his offensive efficiency by singling to put the Utes on the board. Migueles singled and advanced on a throwing error a few batters later, driving in two more Utes to bring Stanford’s lead down to two.
Shea Kramer doubled to left field to start things off for the Utes. After advancing to third base on a ground out, Chase Fernlund singled to bring Kramer to the plate and putting the Utes within striking distance.
The Utes sat the Cardinal down one, two, three in the bottom half of the fourth inning before taking the lead in the fifth. Migueles blasted a two-run opposite field bomb to put the Utes on top 6-5.
Stanford didn’t back down though, and Andrew Daschbach homered in the bottom half of the fifth to tie things back up.
Utah and Stanford both had scoring opportunities squandered in the seventh and eighth innings of the ballgame. Stanford second baseman Duke Kinamon was ejected in the seventh inning in a collision at home plate. Utah had two on with no outs and couldn’t get a runner across in the eighth.
No runs came across in the ninth or tenth innings, so the Utes and the Cardinal continued the deadlock into extras.
In the bottom of the twelfth inning, the Cardinal blasted a walk-off double with two on and two outs to beat the Utes 7-6.
On the final day of the three-game series, the Utes jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead. In the second, Kramer began the scoring singling and scoring Migueles. Later in the inning, Chris Rowan earned a one-out bases loaded walk to add one more to the Utes’ lead.
The early lead was carried into the fourth until Tim Tawa singled to start the scoring for Stanford. The Cardinal tacked on two more in the inning to take the lead 3-2.
Utah started things off hot in the fifth inning. Dunn singled to tie the game at three. Stanford continued to be effective offensively as a past ball and an error brought two runs home.
The Cardinal took a 5-3 lead into the eighth inning. The Utes saw a spectacular defensive play as Migueles crashed into the wall, robbing Daschbach of a home run. The Cardinal weren’t fazed by the effort as they added two insurance runs.
Defensive miscues continued to haunt the Utes as they finished with six errors, totaling eleven on the weekend. Stanford finished the sweep of Utah with a 7-3 victory.
Next up for the Utes is their first conference home series against Oregon. Utah will play the Ducks on Friday at 6 p.m., Saturday at 4 p.m., and Sunday at 1 p.m. The games will be played at Smith’s Ballpark in Salt Lake City, Utah and you can follow live stats at utahutes.com.