Utah Baseball Takes Down UVU in Midweek Game

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Kevin Cody

University of Utah redshirt Sophomore Jayden Kiernan (26) in a NCAA Baseball game vs. Washington State at Smith’s Ballpark in Salt Lake City, Utah on Saturday, April 10, 2021. (Photo by Kevin Cody | Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Justin Prather, Sports Writer

 

The University of Utah baseball team traveled down to Orem for a midweek game against the Utah Valley University Wolverines on Tuesday, April 20. The Utes desperately needed a win after a three-game series sweep in Los Angeles at the hands of the UCLA Bruins. 

Utah and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Weekend

Utah faced a challenge on the road against UCLA, but the loss dealt out by the Bruins was devastating. In game one, Utah walked away with seven hits and no runs but allowed 20 hits for 20 runs. Justin Kelly pitched for three innings, giving up seven runs before being retired in favor of Josh Giffins, who ended up giving up 11 runs in two innings.

In the second game Utah managed to convert five hits into three runs, but gave up 13 to UCLA, seven of them after a no out pitching change from Kyle Robeniol to Randon Hostert. Searching deep for the silver lining, in the first game hits were more or less spread out among the team, while in the second Jaylon McLaughlin led with two, joined by Jayden Kiernan with two in game three.

Calm After the Storm

Utah needed a win after the brutal beating received over the weekend. The response was an equally brutal tee-off on UVU, ending with a 14-1 win for the Utes. All the runs needed to win the matchup were scored in the first at-bat for Utah. Kiernan walked to lead off and took second on a single from Kai Roberts. Trey Clarkson stepped up with a double, and with some help from a Wolverines’ error made it to third and added two RBIs. 

Utah held UVU and remained quiet themselves until the fourth inning. The Wolverines switched pitchers to start the fourth, but Matt Richardson wasn’t phased and led off with a double and found his way across on a single from McLaughlin. Kiernan and Roberts added hits and made their way home on a homer from Clarkson to go up 7-0. Utah would add three more in the fifth, two more in the seventh and two last nails in the eighth and ninth, respectively.

Utah pitchers held UVU until the eighth where a Wolverine runner made their way home on a wild pitch. Utah ended the game 14-1 and moved to 9-21 record overall on the season.

Up Next

Utah will stay in Salt Lake City for their next conference meeting with the Arizona State University Sun Devils. In their last meeting, ASU got the best of Utah in a non-conference series where Utah lost three winnable games, the largest margin being five runs to none. Since their last meeting, ASU has gone 15-9 overall and 8-8 in Pac-12 conference play. Utah will not threaten any of the top players in the conference standings, but they still have plenty of opportunity to show that they are relevant in Pac-12 Baseball. The first pitch in the upcoming series is scheduled for 6 p.m. MDT on Friday, April 23.

 

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