Utah Baseball Has Winning Weekend at Kleberg Bank College Classic

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Kyle Robeniol (13) throws a pitch as the Utes take on the BYU Cougars at Smith's Ballpark May 8, 2018. (Photo by: Justin Prather | Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Brayden Ramsay, Sports Writer

 

The University of Utah baseball team travelled to Corpus Christi, Texas this past weekend to take on Texas A&M Corpus Christi, Missouri and Kansas State in the Kleberg Bank College Classic. The Utes would enter the tournament with a 1-3 season record and leave with a 3-4 record after three tight matchups.

 

Utah vs. Texas A&M Corpus Christi

First up for the Utes was the host, Texas A&M Corpus Christi. With two outs in the top of the eleventh and two men on, Chase Fernlund singled to right field driving home Noah Burgarello to give the Utes a 2-1 lead. Momentum continued to stay with the Utes as Dustyn Schramm would shut out the Islanders in the final frame to give Utah the win.

Schramm wasn’t the only Ute with a great pitching performance, as starter Justin Kelley would go six innings and only allow one run. Kelly’s five hit, three strikeout effort would keep the Utes within striking distance of a victory all night.

Brock Rudy’s bases loaded walk would tie things up for the Utes in the top of the sixth, allowing Kelly to be credited with the win.

Rykker Tom went 3-4 and has had the hot bat for the Utes through the first two weekends of play.

 

Utah vs. Missouri

David Watson and Ian MacIver’s pitching performances were stellar in game two, but it wouldn’t be enough to top the Tigers as Missouri would win 3-2.

Watson and MacIver combined to give up seven hits against Mizzou. Watson’s nine strikeouts would be a career high, while MacIver’s three strikeouts are his most on the season.

Missouri’s two home runs in the second inning gave the Tigers an early advantage before Utah’s surge would tie the game back up in the fifth inning.

Vinny Zavolta’s single scored Zack Moeller in the fourth inning before Jayden Kiernan would single and drive in his first and only RBI of the tournament.

Missouri got their third run across in the sixth inning, which would seal the win for the Tigers.

Tyler Thompson and Zavolta would each go 2-3 at the plate to lead the Utes in their efforts.

 

Utah vs. Kansas State

Utah’s final game of the weekend ended in fireworks as the Utes mounted a ninth inning comeback to return to Salt Lake as victors over the Wildcats. The Utes would not only leave with a 2-1 victory, but they would do so while only having one hit on the day.

Another pitching duel was the theme of game three as Kyle Robeniol would go 6.1 innings, giving up four hits on Sunday afternoon. Josh Giffins and Zac McCleve continued to hold off the Wildcats in relief of Robeniol, leading the Utes into the ninth inning down 1-0.

Matt Richardson would single in the ninth for the Utes only hit of the game. Zavolta walked and advance to second on a Thompson bunt to put two runners in scoring position.

Richardson scored on a wild pitch to tie the game at one, one batter later. As the ball was being searched for behind the plate, it gave Zavolta enough time to advance to third base with still only one out.

Two Utah batters would walk to load the bases before Shea Kramer stepped into the batter’s box.

Kramer made contact with a pitch, sending a soft dribbler to the shortstop. Kansas State would flip the ball to the second baseman, but the second baseman’s double play throw was sent wide left of the first baseman, allowing Kramer to reach on a fielder’s choice. As the throw sailed wide, Zavolta raced home, giving the Utes the victory.

 

Next Week

Utah will be back in Texas to take on the UT Arlington Mavericks in a three-game series beginning on Friday.

 

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@brayden_ramsay