DAVIS, Calif. — After setting the tone for UC Davis with a three-run homerun in his first at bat of the afternoon, junior Caleb Van Blake drove in the tying run for the Aggies in the bottom of the ninth to force extra innings during Sunday’s series finale against Creighton. But a three-run inning for the Bluejays in the top of the 11th would close the door on the Aggies, resulting in a 10-7 win for Creighton over UC Davis.
Creighton will enter its next scheduled series against Central Arkansas with a 4-2 record. The Aggies (2-5) will continue their homestand next weekend as they host St. John’s for three on Mar. 2-4.
The first inning of Sunday’s matchup saw a combined seven runs cross the plate as well as the first lead change of the afternoon, with Creighton taking an early 2-0 lead off a 2-RBI swing from sophomore outfielder Will Robertson. The Aggies answered with back-to-back singles from senior Brad Pluschkell and junior Ryan Anderson, halving the Bluejays’ lead. Two batters later, a balk would tally another run for the Aggies to tie the game at two apiece, but UC Davis would have more to say before the end of the inning. With no outs and two runners on, the fifth batter in the lineup, Van Blake, gave the Aggies a three-run advantage with his second round-tripper of the season.
The Bluejays steadily chipped away at the Aggies’ lead over the next three innings as they regained the advantage, 7-5, in the top of the fourth.
Following a scoreless two-and-a-half innings, the Aggies were first to break the silence in the bottom of the eighth, kicking things off with a lead-off double to right field from sophomore Alejandro Lara. Lara then advanced to third on a wild pitch and crossed home plate on an RBI-single down the left field line from pinch hitter Logan Denholm.
Trailing by one heading into the bottom of the ninth, the Aggies found what they were looking for after back-to-back walks set the stage for Van Blake to earn his fourth RBI of the afternoon with a single to right field.
But Creighton’s three-run inning in the top of the 11th would be too much to overcome for the Aggies, lifting Creighton to a 10-7 win over UC Davis.
UC Davis right-hander Connor Loar (0-1) suffered his first loss of the season for the Aggies after allowing three runs on five hits over three innings, while freshman right-hander Brett Erwin made his second appearance of the season on the mound, allowing two runs on five hits and striking out three over three innings of work.
Creighton right-hander Jonah Smith (1-0)—one of seven Bluejays to take the mound on Sunday afternoon—was credited with his first win of the season after entering in the bottom of the ninth inning and allowing just one hit across 1.2 innings of work, while right-hander Thomas Luevano earned his first official save of the 2018 season after providing Creighton with one inning of scoreless, hitless relief in the bottom of the 11th.
The Aggies return to action on Friday (Mar. 2) as they welcome No. 23 St. John’s for three at Dobbins Stadium. First pitch is scheduled for 2:30 p.m. on Friday, 1 p.m. on Saturday, and 1 p.m. for Sunday’s series finale.
Creighton 10, UC Davis 7 (02/25/18 at Davis, Calif.)
Creighton........... 212 200 000 03 - 10 15 0 (4-2)
UC Davis............ 500 000 011 00 - 7 11 2 (2-5)
Pitchers: Creighton - Preston Church; Ian Evans(1); Ryan Connolly(4); Grant Spranger(8);
Mitchell Boyer(9); Jonah Smith(9); Thomas Luevano(11) and . UC Davis - Hannah, Blake;
Erwin, Brett(3); Wieser, Tim(6); Loar, Connor(9) and .
Win-Jonah Smith(1-0) Save-Thomas Luevano(1) Loss-Loar, Connor(0-1) T-3:44 A-311
HR CU - Will Robertson (1).
HR UCD - Van Blake, Caleb (2).
Weather: Sunny, 59 degrees, S 5pmh
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Providing a small-town community feel while providing a world-class academic experience, UC Davis is home to more than 37,000 students and centrally located between San Francisco, Lake Tahoe, and the Napa Valley. The No. 6-ranked public university in the nation according to the Wall Street Journal, and among the top 10 public universities nationwide according to U.S. News and World Report, UC Davis offers nearly 100 graduate programs and more than 100 academic majors across four colleges and six professional schools, ranking among the world and nation's best in numerous disciplines, including veterinary science, agriculture, and animal science programs.
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