After giving up an early lead, Seattle University put together a record-setting 11-run seventh inning to pull away for a 17-5 victory over UC Davis Sunday afternoon in collegiate baseball action at Dobbins Stadium.
Down 5-4 after six innings, the Redhawks came back in the top of the seventh off UC Davis reliever Robert Parucha, as he walked Landon Cray (Chimacum, Wash.) and Michael McCann (Vancouver, Wash.) and hit Cullen Hendrickson (Auburn, Wash.) with a pitch to load the bases with one out. Brian Olson (Black Diamond, Wash.) hammered a pitch off the left field wall for a double, plating Cray and McCann to put the Redhawks back in the lead, 6-5.
After another pitching change for the Aggies, Grant Newton (Bend, Ore.) drew a walk to once again load the bases, and Ryan Somers (Sammamish, Wash.) followed by taking a 3-2 pitch for a ball, forcing in Hendrickson with another Redhawk run. UC Davis went to another reliever, but Brock Carpenter (Milton, Wash.) broke the game open with a bases-clearing double to right-center field, extending Seattle U’s advantage to 10-5.
Carpenter, who advanced to third on an Aggie error, scored on a single by Griffin Andreychuk (Nanaimo, B.C.). After Cray reached on a fielder’s choice, Chase Fields (Ontario, Ore.) drew a walk, and pinch hitter Austen Brand (Tacoma, Wash.) singled to load the bases. Hendrickson beat the throw at first base to reach on an infield single, scoring Cray, and Olson followed with the Redhawks’ second bases-clearing double of the inning to make the score 15-5 in Seattle U’s favor. The 11 runs scored in the seventh were the most scored by the Redhawks in a single inning since baseball returned to Seattle U in 2010.
In the top of the eighth inning, Somers led off with a double to right field, advanced to third on a single by Cray, and scored on a double to left field by Fields. Hendrickson hit his second home run in as many days to lead off the ninth inning, closing out the highest scoring output for the Redhawks in a single game since the program was reestablished.
Starting pitcher Mac Acker (Redmond, Wash.) made his Redhawk debut, allowing six hits, two walks, and five runs in six innings while picking up five strikeouts. Garrett Anderson (Kennewick, Wash.) and Skyler Genger (Kent, Wash.) combined for three scoreless innings out of the bullpen.
“I am very happy with how our pitching staff competed and how we stayed with our plan,” Seattle U head coach Donny Harrel said. “The park was more offensive for us today and we took advantage of it in the 11-run inning.”
Fields led off the game with a single to left-center field, and advanced to second base on a UC Davis passed ball. He hustled to third base on a flyout to left field, and then scored on a groundout to second base hit by Hendrickson to give the Redhawks a 1-0 lead.
In the top of the second inning, Newton led off with a walk, and Sam Finfer (Bellevue, Wash.) followed with a single through the left side of the infield. After a strikeout, Andreychuk and Cray drew back-to-back walks to force Newton in with a run. UC Davis starter Max Cordy picked up another strikeout, but McCann sent a single through the left side of the infield to drive in Finfer and Andreychuk, extending Seattle U’s lead to 4-0.
UC Davis (1-3) broke through in the bottom of the fourth inning, starting with a leadoff single by Steven Patterson that was the Aggies’ first hit of the game. After a fielder’s choice, Austin March sent a shot over the right-field wall for a two-run home run, cutting Seattle U’s lead in half at 4-2.
The Aggies drew closer in the bottom of the fifth as Izaak Silva led off with a single and advanced to second on a Redhawk error. Evan Heptig laid down a sacrifice bunt to advance Silva to third base, and Tino Lipson followed with a sacrifice fly to left field to drive in Silva with UC Davis’s third run of the game.
In the bottom of the sixth inning, Cameron Olson led off with a single up the middle, Acker retired the next two Aggie batters. Mason Novak drew a four-pitch walk to extend the inning, and Silva followed with a long single off the right-field wall, driving in Olson and Novak to put the Aggies on top, 5-4.
By taking three of four games over the weekend, Seattle U earned its first four-game series victory in 10 opportunities since 2010. The Redhawks took advantage of control problems by the UC Davis pitchers throughout the day Sunday, as the Aggies walked 11 Seattle U batters.
“Cullen Hendrickson had a great weekend and led us the entire way. This is a big start for our program to go on the road and win a four-game series,” said Harrel.
Seattle University (3-1) returns to California next weekend for another four-game series, this time facing the Cal State Northridge Matadors starting Friday, Feb. 21, at 2 p.m.