Baseball Pounded; Plays DH Today

The chance to take second place was at hand for the U baseball team heading into the first game of the UNLV series. BYU had been swept by San Diego State and had nine conference losses, and if the Utes were to sweep UNLV, then they would overtake the Cougars for second place.

The Utes had taken two out of three from UNLV in Vegas, and chances were good the Utes would be able to defeat the Rebels at home.

After the first two games of the series were postponed due to weather conditions, the Utes got their chance on Sunday night, but could not deliver, as they were downed 7-2.

The loss puts the Utes’ MWC record at 8-8 in conference play, and the Utes will have to win the rescheduled doubleheader today in order to move ahead of BYU.

Jason Wylie got the start for the Utes, and was touched up early, as the Rebels started things off in the third inning with two runs.

UNLV was able to score another run in the top of the fifth inning, but the Utes finally were able to get something going in the bottom half of the inning.

A solo shot by Donald Hawes in the bottom of the fifth was the first run of the game for the Utes, but they could not get any more runs in the inning.

The fireworks did not start until the eighth inning, when a shot by UNLV center fielder Brent Johnson apparently went over the fence and came back into the field?a play that was ruled a home run.

The play caused much controversy, as U coach Tim Esmay vehemently argued that the ball hit the fence and came back in the field of play, but the play was ruled a home run and the Rebels were up 5-1.

UNLV was not done, as Clay Westmoreland came in from the U bullpen only to let the Rebels put up two more runs on the board to give them a nice cushion of a 7-1 lead.

Utah looked to start a rally in the bottom of the ninth, as Matt Ciaramella knocked in a run to narrow the gap to 7-2.

But that would be all that the Utes would get, as Donnie Saba flied out to give the Rebels the win.

The Utes will have a chance to rebound from the loss today, as they start the doubleheader to make up for the missed games.

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