Kaden Schmitt’s complete-game effort and a three-RBI afternoon from Jackson Overlund helped Utah Valley University top the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, 6-1, on Saturday at UCCU Ballpark.
The victory gives the Wolverines (11-4, 4-2) their third-straight series win and second-consecutive WAC series win.
Schmitt surrendered just one run on seven scattered hits and matched his career high—set in his last start against Northern Colorado—with eight strikeouts while not allowing a walk. The complete game is the first of the senior right-hander's career.
“He went out and competed. We needed that start from him and he delivered so I’m happy for him,” said UVU head coach Eric Madsen of Schmitt’s performance. “That’s three weeks in a row that we’ve lost the opener and come back to win the last two, so while we obviously want to come out and win the opener, I’m proud of the guys for coming back each time. UTRGV is a very good team; they’re well-coached and this is a really good series win for us.”
Utah Valley took a 2-0 lead in the third on an RBI single from Trevor Peterson and an RBI groundout from Overlund. After Drew Sims doubled past third to plate Jake Berry in the fourth, Overlund hit his third home run of the season, a two-run shot in the fifth, to extend the Utah Valley lead to 5-0.
The Vaqueros (16-12, 3-3) got their run in the sixth after a leadoff double by Coleman Grubbs and an RBI groundout two batters later by Austin Siener. The Wolverines completed their offensive output with an RBI base hit from Modler that brought home Beltran.
Schmitt improved to 3-0 with the win, while Jorge Flores lasted six innings and allowed three earned runs (six total) on six hits and struck out six.
The Wolverines take a break from conference play on Monday and Tuesday with a quick two-game series against Air Force. Monday’s game is slated for 6 p.m. MT, and Tuesday’s contest will begin at 1 p.m.
Clint Burgi is the associate athletic director for communications and marketing at Utah Valley University. For more information on Wolverine athletics, visit WolverineGreen.com.