Arizona Baseball

Arizona going for series sweep at USC to start Pac-12 season

Salpointe graduate Mason White is one of the nation’s leaders with 23 RBIs through Arizona first 13 games (Arizona Athletics photo)

The Arizona media-relations department provided information for this report:

A standout performance from starting pitcher Clark Candiotti and another offensive onslaught fueled Arizona to a 9-6 victory over USC on Saturday night at Great Park at Irvine, Calif.

Arizona (7-6, 2-0 Pac-12) will go for the three-game sweep of USC (3-11, 0-2) in the final game of the series on Sunday at 1 p.m. The games are at Irvine because Dedeaux Field, USC’s home stadium, is undergoing renovations this year.

Candiotti (1-0) picked up his first win of the season with 6 2/3 innings of three-run work on Saturday night.

The veteran right-hander, son of longtime MLB pitcher and Diamondbacks broadcaster Tom Candiotti, allowed just five hits and struck out a season-high nine.

Arizona’s pitching staff struck out 11, giving them double-digit strikeouts in back-to-back games for the first time this year.

The Wildcats’ offense jumped out to a first-inning lead for the second time in as many games, this time on a solo home run from shortstop Mason White, a Salpointe grad. White was 2 for 5 with two RBIs. He now has a team-best 23 RBIs this season.

Arizona pounded out 13 hits, five of which went for extra bases, and drew three walks to produce nine runs.

First baseman Tommy Splaine hit his second home run of the series in the sixth inning, a two-run blast that nearly reached the adjacent field. Splain went 2 for 5 with two runs and two RBIs.

USC plated one run in both the eighth and ninth, but the rally was not enough.

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