Utah Valley University held off Chicago State to win the first game of a doubleheader, 5-4, and then used some timely two-out hitting to take the second game, 7-2, on Saturday afternoon. The Wolverines (12-18, 5-3) have now won a season high five straight games.
Starters Andrew Freter and Ryan Evans both picked up wins in quality starts. Evans (2-2) did not surrender an earned run for his second straight start and battled through four errors in the second game. He struck out five in 6.2 innings, allowing just two unearned runs on seven hits.
Freter (2-4) lasted 7.1 innings and gave up three runs on five hits while striking out seven Chicago State (9-16, 0-5) batters.
“Those two really did a great job today. Andrew was excellent for seven innings and Ryan, with the way he pitched through our defensive miscues, was huge for us,” head coach Eric Madsen said. “It’s also nice to see us get those timely two-out hits in big situations.”
In the first game, UVU built a 5-0 lead before holding off the Cougars late. After a run in the first, Sean Moysh hit a home run to right center, his third of the year, before driving another run with a single in the fifth.
In the sixth, Colby Croft singled and then scored when Kade Andrus tripled to the gap in right center. Andrus then scored to give the Wolverines a 5-0 lead on a sacrifice fly by Cam Zollinger.
Chicago State got on the board with one in the bottom of the sixth and then scored three times in the eighth to get within a run. With the tying run at third and two outs in the eighth, Nathan Poff was caught stealing to end that threat and Chad Michaud finished it off in the ninth to earn his third save of the season. Moysh had three hits in the game to lead UVU.
In the second game, CSU led 2-0 after a pair in the third, taking advantage of two Wolverine errors in the frame.
Craig Brinkerhoff led off the fifth inning with a double, moved to third on a groundout by Riley White and then scored on a base hit by Andrus. Andrus scored to tie the game at 2-2 on the first of two, two-out RBI base hits by Greyson Bogden.
Andrus started a decisive two-out rally in the seventh with a base hit to left. Zollinger was hit by a pitch to put two on before Bogden gave the Wolverines a 3-2 lead with his second clutch base hit, again scoring Andrus.
Seth Rhineer, who had two hits in the game, singled home two more runs with a base hit through the middle, scoring Zollinger and Bogden. Krueger capped the inning, and a string of six straight Wolverines to reach base, with a single that brought Rhineer to the plate to make it 6-2.
Utah Valley scored its final run an inning later when Beau Kallas tripled to center and later scored on a base hit by White.
The win secures the third straight series win for the Wolverines, who will go for the sweep on Sunday at noon CT with sophomore Danny Beddes taking the mound.
Clint Burgi is the assistant athletic director for sports information at Utah Valley University. For more information on Wolverine athletics, visit WolverineGreen.com.