Veltmann, Cats Blank UMass, 9-0

March 8, 2009

Final Box Score | Arizona Overall Stats

TUCSON, Ariz. – One day after seeing a furious late-inning rally fall short, the Arizona baseball team shutout visiting Massachusetts, 9-0, to improve to 8-5 on the season and win its second weekend series of the season.

Sunday’s rubber match, however, featured some different excitement than Saturday’s comeback bid. A total of six players were ejected – three from each team – in the bottom of the sixth inning as the Wildcats seized control of the game.

With the Wildcats on top 3-0 in the bottom of the sixth, Arizona first baseman Dillon Baird hit a sharp single up the middle to lead off the inning. Baird, who had been picked off first following a single earlier in the game, drew a pickoff throw from Minutemen pitcher Nick Serino.

Baird appeared to get his legs tangled up with first baseman Peter Copa as he reached his leg back into first base on the play. As the two players exchanged shoves, both benches cleared resulting in the ejection of three players from each team, including Baird and Copa.

The commotion overshadowed an excellent outing by starter Matt Veltmann, who earned his first win in an Arizona uniform. Veltmann pitched 5.2 innings, struck out five, scattered four hits and set the table for UA’s first combined shutout of the season.

The effective start was much needed for the Wildcats as the Arizona offense struggled to mount a threat over the first four innings.

In a scoreless game in the fifth inning, Brad Glenn doubled to left field to open the home half of the inning. Dwight Childs then reached on a bunt single, before Bryce Ortega drove home Glenn on a sacrifice flyout.

With a 1-0 lead, Rafael Valenzuela and Bobby Coyle hit back-to-back doubles to right field to drive home to more runs and stake the Wildcats to a 3-0 lead.

Despite the sixth-inning altercation, the Wildcats continued to tack on runs after the ejections. Hunter Pace entered the game as a pinch runner for Baird, and moved to second following a walk to Glenn with one out.

Codi Harshman singled home Pace, and Glenn came across to score on a groundout by Ortega.

The Wildcats added two more runs later in the sixth and then turned the game over to Jason Stoffel, who pitched a hitless three innings to earn his third save of the season.

Glenn doubled again to lead off the eighth as Arizona added a pair of insurance runs to push the game to its final score of 9-0.

Arizona will welcome Oklahoma State to Tucson for a mid-week three game series beginning on Tuesday, March 10. First pitch is scheduled for 7 p.m. at Jerry Kindall Field.


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