A pair of strong pitching performances led Utah Valley University to a doubleheader sweep against Bakersfield, 4-1 and 4-2, on Saturday at Brent Brown Ballpark.
Senior Ryan Evans pitched 7.2 innings in the first game and sophomore Danny Beddes lasted 8.1 innings, and coupled with an eighth-inning rally, allowed UVU (9-18, 3-3) to win two of three in the series. Wolverine pitching allowed just six hits during the course of the twin bill with all three runs scored coming in unearned.
“It was incredible what those two did today. Evans controlled the tempo the entire way and Danny absolutely pitched great tonight, especially working out of trouble in the middle innings after we made some errors,” head coach Eric Madsen said. “I’m happy for our guys to come back and beat a quality team like Bakersfield.”
Evans allowed his defense to work behind him nearly the entire way. Perfect into the fifth inning, he retired the first 13 batters he faced before Alan Gwynn singled with one out in the fifth.
Gwynn was the only base runner Evans allowed until the eighth as he retired the side in order in six of his innings. His first strikeout didn’t come until the seventh, when he retired Max Carter and Chance Gusbeth swinging to end the inning. After allowing a two-out walk and a base hit in the eighth, he was lifted for Devin Nelson, who got Garrett Pierce to fly out to right to end the frame.
The Wolverines led 1-0 behind Mark Krueger’s first-inning triple until the seventh when UVU put three more runs on the board. Seth Rhineer had an RBI single and Colby Croft and Craig Brinkerhoff walked with the bases loaded to put the Wolverines up 4-0.
Bakersfield (11-15, 4-5) took advantage of two ninth-inning errors to score one run and had the tying run at the plate before Chad Michaud struck out Gwynn and Oscar Sanay flew out to right to end the game.
Evans’ (1-2) final line was 7.2 innings pitched and no runs on two hits with three strikeouts and one walk. James Barragan (2-3) took the loss after giving up four runs on seven hits in 6.2 innings.
The Wolverines won game two behind Beddes’ arm, two RBIs from Croft and a three-run eighth inning. Down 2-1 entering the eighth, Greyson Bogden walked to lead off before Rhineer was hit by a pitch and Moysh reached on a bunt single to load the bases with nobody out.
A wild pitch allowed Bogden to score the tying run before Croft singled up the middle for the go-ahead run. The Wolverines added an insurance run on Riley White’s grounder to lead 4-2 entering the ninth.
Kyle Valgardson came on to get his second save, retiring the final two hitters on the night, getting David Metzgar to foul out to end the game.
Both runs that scored against Beddes (2-3) were unearned, with the sophomore allowing just the two unearned runs on three hits and striking out a pair in the longest outing of his young career.
Utah Valley will make the short trip to BYU on Tuesday for a 6 p.m. start before traveling to Chicago State for a three-game WAC series beginning Friday in the Windy City.
Clint Burgi is the assistant athletic director for sports information at Utah Valley University. For more information on Wolverine athletics, visit WolverineGreen.com.