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Arizona baseball drops series-opener at Cal, snapping six-game winning streak

The Wildcats left 15 runners on base in a 9-3 loss

Photo by Jason Bartel

The California Golden Bears beat the Arizona Wildcats, 9-3, on Friday in the first game of a three-game series in Berkeley.

The loss snaps UA’s six-game winning streak. The game was fast for Arizona baseball standards, lasting just over three hours.

Cal scored first. In the second inning, shortstop Cameron Eden doubled to score right fielder Jeffery Mitchell Jr.

Eden picked up his second run batted in for the evening when he hit a sacrifice fly out in the fourth, which plated third baseman Sam Wezniak to give the Bears a 2-0 lead.

Wezniak was a huge factor in the game. He had two hits, including an RBI single in the fifth and a three-run homer in the seventh that made it 7-2.

Cal outfielder Max Flower and left fielder Jonah Davis each had RBI singles.

Cal’s Tanner Dodson started in centerfield and acted as the team’s closer. Offensively, he had two hits and two walks with an RBI single in the eighth. As a pitcher, he recorded his 11th save, pitching three innings, giving up a run with five strikeouts.

Defensively, Cal struggled at times, committing three errors and two in the second inning.

Arizona scored three runs and managed 12 hits, but left a whopping 15 on base.

Their first run came in the second inning on a single by second baseman Jacob Blas with the bases loaded. Catcher Cesar Salazar scored but third baseman Nick Quintana was held up at third. The next batter, Matt Fraizer, grounded into an inning-ending double play.

Ryan Haug scored Arizona’s second run of the game, and the Wildcats plated him without a hit, walk, or error. Haug was hit by pitcher Erik Martinez, who then threw two wild pitches to move Haug to third. First baseman Alfonso Rivas hit a sac fly to score the run.

The last run came on a solo homer by Cal Stevenson in the eighth, which made it 7-3. It was his first homer of the season.

The Bears would answer with two runs in the bottom of the eighth.

The Wildcats’ pitching was less than superb. Ace Cody Deason (5-5) entered the night with a 2.36 earned run average, but gave up four earned runs on four walks and seven hits through six innings. He struck out three.

When Deason exited, Arizona coach Jay Johnson decided to play matchups going through two pitchers over three batters. Reliever Avery Weems only threw two pitches and hit Jonah Davis with his second pitch.

Jonathan Guardado was the last pitcher of the game for Arizona. He went 1 2/3 innings but gave up three runs on four hits.

Arizona falls to 29-18 overall and 10-12 in the Pac 12. They are 39th in RPI, still in decent shape to reach the postseason.

Game two of the series is Saturday at 6:05 p.m. PT.