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Group pitching effort leads Arizona baseball to shutout win at Creighton

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RHP Anthony ‘Tonko’ Susac
Arizona Athletics

Winning in Omaha is a big deal, no matter when it happens.

Six Arizona pitchers combined on a 7-hit shutout, while the Wildcats scored all of their runs in the final three innings of a 6-0 win at Creighton on Monday night in Omaha, Neb.

It was the first win for the UA (25-12) at Charles Schwab Field, site of the College World Series, since Game 1 of the 2016 CWS championship series. It had dropped four in a row there, including both games in the 2021 CWS.

The Wildcats’ ninth true road victory this season also snapped a 14-game home win streak for Creighton (21-9) and gives them a chance to finish the current 5-game road trip with a winning record after losing two of three at Utah.

After allowing 26 runs on 41 hits along with 10 walks and seven hit batters in the Utah series, Arizona went with a bullpen game and every arm was solid. Holden Christian, who had lost his closer gig, started and struck out three over the first two innings, then George Arias Jr. struck out two in the third. Freshman Anthony Susac followed with the best outing of his career, striking out five over three scoreless innings to get the win.

Jonathan Guardado, Quinn Flanagan and Trevor Long followed with clean innings, completing Arizona’s first shutout since Garrett Irvin threw a complete game against UC-Santa Barbara in the NCAA regionals last June.

Arizona’s streak of scoring in 208 games looked to be in serious jeopardy after it managed only two hits through the first six innings, but with one out in the seventh Tony Bullard broke the scoreless tie with a solo home run that Creighton left fielder Jared Wegner nearly kept in the park.

The Wildcats broke things open with a 3-run eighth, scoring the first run on the fielding error and the others on a 2-run single through a drawn-in infield by Mac Bingham. An RBI groundout by Nik McClaughry and a 2-out RBI double by Daniel Susac in the ninth made it 6-0.

Susac, who struck out his first three at-bats, finished 2 for 5 for his 24th multi-hit game this season.

Arizona and Creighton complete their 2-game series Tuesday at 6 p.m. PT. CBS Sports Network is set to air the contest.