Dons rally late to defeat Aggies, 9-4

Senior Evan Heptig finished with a career-high three hits on Tuesday against San Francisco.
April 14, 2015

Box Score

DAVIS, Calif. -- Brendan Hendriks' infield single scored Michael Eaton with the go-ahead run, part of a string of seven unanswered scores on Tuesday afternoon, lifting visiting San Francisco to a 9-4 victory over UC Davis in a non-conference clash at Dobbins Stadium.

The loss was the third straight for the Aggies, who fell to 20-14-1 overall heading into this weekend's three-game Big West Conference series at UC Irvine in Southern California. The Dons evened their record at 19-19 overall, out-hitting their hosts, 13-11, for the game.

Seniors Tino Lipson and Evan Heptig finished with a team-high three hits on the day, the latter setting a career high with his three singles while also driving home a pair of runs, while classmate Nick Lynch added two hits -- including his team-best 20th double of the season, which ranks tied for third on the school's single-season list.

Freshman Blake Peters (0-2) suffered the loss, charged with one run on two hits in two-thirds of an inning in relief of starter Nat Hamby, who struck out a career-high nine and scattered four hits in 5.1 innings before leaving with a no decision.

Logan West (1-1) earned the win in relief for USF, allowing just three hits over three scoreless innings, striking out a pair.

After a walk to Brad Pluschkell and a single by Lipson put runners on the corners, a double play ball was enough to bring home Pluschkell with the first run of the game and a 1-0 UC Davis lead. The advantage was short-lived as the Dons loaded the bases with two outs before Eaton sliced a single to left, scoring a pair for a 2-1 advantage.

Hamby took control, retiring nine straight from that point, collecting seven of his strikeouts from the third to the fifth inning, and striking out the side in the fifth. Meanwhile, the Aggies regained the lead with a pair of runs in the fourth on Heptig's two-run single up the middle, and added another in the fifth on Lynch's double to left to make it 4-2.

That would be all for UC Davis, however, as San Francisco scored twice in the sixth on RBI singles from Dominic Miroglio and Blake Valley, and took the lead for good with a three-run seventh. Eaton led-off with a double to chase Peters from the game, but reliever Spencer Henderson could not stem the tide, as a wild pitch moved Eaton to third, before Henderson got two quick outs on a strikeout and ground ball.

That brought up Hendriks, who bounced a ball deep in the hole at short that was fielded cleanly by Heptig, but the senior would have no play as Eaton scored to make it 5-4. Derek Atkinson added another on an RBI triple to center that just eluded the glove of John Williams on a diving attempt, and he would eventually score on a passed ball to make it 7-4.

San Francisco added two more in the ninth and the Dons' defense did the rest, turning two double plays in the final three innings (three overall), and throwing out a pair of runners at the plate while erasing two more trying to steal second and third during the course of the game.

The Aggies finished with 11 hits in the game, the 16th time that UC Davis has reached double digits in that category this season. Eaton and Miroglio each finished with three hits to lead the San Francisco offense.

This weekend's series in Irvine opens on Friday (April 17) at 6:30 p.m., with the final two games scheduled for a 1 p.m. first pitch. The first two games of the series will be broadcast live on ESPN3.com and the WatchESPN app.

San Francisco 9, UC Davis 4 (Apr 14, 2015 at Davis, Calif.)
----------------------------------------------------------------------
San Francisco....... 020 002 302 - 9 13 1 (19-19)
UC Davis............ 100 210 000 - 4 11 0 (20-14-1)
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Pitchers: San Francisco - NARAHARA, Matt; BUONOPANE, Anthony(4); WEST, Logan(6); ULVESTAD, Travis(9) and MIROGLIO, Dominic. UC Davis - Hamby, Nat; Peters, Blake (6); Henderson, Spencer (7); Stone, Zach (7); Blais, Matt (8) and Silva, Izaak.
Win-WEST, Logan(1-1) Loss- Peters, Blake (0-2) T-3:19 A-75
Weather: mid-60s, brisk wind to LF-CF
Peters faced 1 batter in the 7th.