Cardinal Takes Series
STANFORD, Calif. – Freshman Brandt Pancer tossed 4 1/3 strong innings and Stanford (12-3, 2-1 Pac-12) plated four runs, including two on home runs from Nick Brueser and Brock Jones, to claim a 4-1 victory and earn a Pac-12 series win over Utah (4-10, 1-2 Pac-12) on Sunday from Sunken Diamond.
Pancer, who relieved starter Drew Dowd with two out and two aboard in the third inning, struck out four while allowing one run on two hits over his relief outing to earn the victory and move to 3-1 on the season. The native of Suwanee, Ga. retired the final 10 batters he faced in the game.
Dowd battled through 2 2/3 innings, working around four hits and a walk while throwing 56 pitches, to keep the Utes off the board and hand the ball over to Pancer.
Fifth-year senior Zach Grech continued his outstanding season at the back end of the bullpen, closing out the final two innings to convert his seventh save of the year. Grech surrendered one hit while striking out one to seal the victory. With Sunday's effort, Grech has now allowed two unearned runs on seven hits with 17 strikeouts over 16 innings of work this year.
Offensively, Stanford got on the board first in the third inning as Christian Robinson doubled and came around to score on a Drew Bowser RBI-single. Bowser, who went 2-for-3, hit .545 (6 for 11) with a double and three RBIs in the series against Utah.
Utah answered quickly with a run of its own in the fourth to tie the game at 1-1, but Brueser single-handedly put the Cardinal back on top with his third home run of the season – a fifth-inning towering blast out to left field.
The home run came as part of a 2 for 4 day at the plate for the native of Chandler, Ariz.
Leading 2-1, Stanford added a run in the sixth on a passed ball before Jones homered for the seventh time this season in the eighth to extend the lead to 4-1 after eight.
Jones, a native of Fresno, Calif., finished the game 2 for 4 and drove in three RBIs in the series against the Utes.
Stanford will now prepare for a three-game non-conference series with CSU Bakersfield beginning on Friday at 2:05 p.m.