Utah Baseball Takes Two at Washington State


Kevin Cody

University of Utah sophomore Kai Roberts (27) in a NCAA Baseball game vs. BYU at Smith’s Ballpark in Salt Lake City, Utah on March 11, 2021. (Photo by Kevin Cody | The Daily Utah Chronicle)

By Sean Overton, Sports Editor


After a high-scoring week, the University of Utah baseball team (17-10-1) was determined to keep their momentum up. They had a pair of high-scoring games last week, winning 18-2 against Northern Colorado and 25-8 against Mercer.

They weren’t able to score as much this week, but they did find some much needed wins as the team heads into the middle of the season.

The Utes started their week off by playing Utah Valley University. They were supposed to play earlier in the year but the game was postponed due to wind. This game looked like it would almost be postponed as well, but was only delayed two hours due to inclement weather.

The Utes opened the scoring in the bottom of the first, taking three runs and an early lead. Utah Valley quickly rebounded and tied it up in the third. Utah Valley would have a nice scoring stretch that led to them having a 6-4 lead by the top of the fourth.

Utah wasn’t prepared to have their momentum ripped from them, and they rallied back to tie the game in the bottom of the fourth. Utah saw a late run by Kai Roberts in the seventh that would give them the advantage.

Looking for insurance runs, Utah had the bases loaded in the eighth, but a strikeout ended their hopes. Zac McCleve closed out the game for Utah, assuring the team a big 7-6 win ahead of Pac-12 play.

The Utes then took a trip up to Pullman, where they faced Washington State in a three-game series.

Utah started the first game with authority, as they recorded three home runs in the second inning. Alex BaezaDakota Duffalo and Carter Booth each hit a home run in the inning, getting six on the board for the Utes.

Washington State fought back and soon brought the score to 6-5 in the fourth inning. Utah got some more comfort when they widened the gap to 10-5 by the top of the ninth inning.

Washington State once again fought back and closed the game to 10-9 in the bottom of the ninth, but Ben Kibbe closed out the game for the Utes as they would win 10-9 in the first game of the series.

Utah came out swinging in the next game of the series. The Utes didn’t allow Washington State to score until the seventh. Utah got their scoring started in the second, and scored 10 runs before Washington State got any.

It was another dominating performance from the Utes, and they went on to win 10-3 at Washington State.

But Utah wasn’t able to close out the series, and they lost in the final game against Washington State. A slow game saw Utah hold a 4-2 lead in the eighth inning, but the Utes were unable to hold on as they fell 4-5.

Utah will once again face Utah Valley University on April 5 before heading home for a long stretch of Pac-12 games.


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