Arizona Baseball

Arizona wins eighth straight behind eighth-inning rally vs. Utah

Information from the Arizona media relations department contributed to this report.

Four unanswered runs, capped with two in the bottom of the eighth, secured a 4-3 victory and a sixth consecutive Pac-12 series win for Arizona over Utah at Hi Corbett Field on Saturday night.

The Wildcats (29-11, 14-6 Pac-12) have won eight consecutive games and will play for a series sweep of Utah (10-25, 5-15) on Sunday morning at 11.

Arizona’s 29 wins are the most of any Pac-12 team.

Arizona has strung together eight straight wins and its 29 wins overall are the most in the Pac-12 (Arizona Athletics photo)

Arizona coach Jay Johnson is approaching his 200th win at Arizona. His at 192-107 in his sixth season.

He achieved his 300th career win on Friday night including one season at NAIA school Point Loma (Calif.) in 2005. His record in nine seasons overall is 301-163. His Division I record, including two seasons at Nevada, is 264-149.

Arizona would achieve its fifth season with at least 30 wins under Johnson with a win Sunday. The Wildcats were 10-5 last year when COVID-19 canceled the season.

Utah took a 3-0 lead into the third inning Saturday before Arizona scored twice on a Jacob Berry sac fly and a RBI single from Ryan Holgate.

Arizona rallied in the eighth to take the lead.

Branden Boissiere and Mac Bingham both singled to open the inning. Two batters later, Boissiere was driven in by Holgate to tie the game at 3. The winning run scored when Bingham sprinted home from third as Utah failed to turn what would have been an inning-ending double play.

Right-hander Chandler Murphy relieved Arizona starter Garrett Irvin in the fourth inning. He proceeded to pitch 4 1/3 innings of three-hit, shutout ball to keep the Wildcats offense within striking distance. He struck out four and had no walks.

Southpaw Riley Cooper (2-0) followed Murphy and logged the final out of the eighth, stranding a runner on first and putting himself in line for the win.

Arizona closer Vince Vannelle worked a perfect 1-2-3 ninth with a pair of strikeouts to slam the door for his seventh save.

Top Arizona hitters:

  • RF Ryan Holgate: 2-for-4, 2 RBIs
  • LF Mac Bingham: 2-for-4, 2 runs
  • 1B Branden Boissiere: 1-for-3, 2 runs, walk

Like Arizona, the Utes totaled eight hits. Jaylon McLaughlin, Matt Richardson and Kai Roberts each had two hits for the Utes. McLaughlin scored two of the three runs and Richardson had two of the three RBIs.

Access the box score by clicking here.

Coming up: Arizona hosts Grand Canyon at 6 p.m. on Tuesday before playing at Stanford’s Sunken Diamond next Friday through Sunday and a game at Santa Clara on May 10.

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