Bulldogs Baseball Rallies In 9-8 Thriller Over Pacific
STOCKTON, Calif. - Steven Halcomb hit a game winning RBI double in the top of the ninth inning to boost Gonzaga University baseball over the University of Pacific 9-8 in its nightcap of a Saturday doubleheader in the Pacific Baseball Invitational at Klein Family Field.
The Bulldogs split the doubleheader, dropping 4-0 to UNLV in the morning, and are 4-3 on the year.
Down 8-7 entering the ninth against Pacific, Cory LeBrun singled to the right side to start the rally. LeBrun would advance to second on a failed pickoff attempt. A Cabe Reiten bunt moved LeBrun to third and Payden Cawley Lamb hit a sacrifice fly to left to tie the game.
With two outs and the game looking like it would go to extra innings, Mitchell Gunsolus walked to put the go-ahead run on base. Gunsolus stole second to give senior Halcomb the opportunity to drive in his fourth RBI of the game.
Halcomb connected and doubled to center field to bring in Gunsolus and put Gonzaga up 9-8.
Freshman Michael Rucker pitched the ninth and picked up his second save of the season.
Gonzaga trailed Pacific 6-2 through five innings.
Down 1-0 after the first inning, the Bulldogs scored two in the third to take the lead. A Halcomb single brought in Alex Bonczyk and that was followed by a Clayton Eslick double to left field to bring in Gunsolus.
Pacific would storm right back and take the lead in the bottom of the inning. The first five batters reached base for the Tigers to bring in three runs. Through three, Pacific led 4-2.
Gonzaga got back into the game in the sixth. Down 6-2, the Tigers added two more in the fourth, Cory LeBrun and Cabe Reiten hit back-to-back singles to open the inning. Pacific would get two outs but Halcomb singled to center to drive in the two Zags.
Pacific added a run in the bottom of the inning with an RBI double from Dustin Torchino but Gonzaga would tie the score at seven with a three run seventh. The Bulldogs loaded the bases for LeBrun who doubled down the right field line bringing in two. Another run scored on a grounder from Brock Slavin to the second baseman.
Gonzaga had 16 hits with four from Halcomb, three from LeBrun and two apiece from Travis Forbes and Gunsolus.
David Bigelow would pick up the victory and was one of four pitchers who took the mound. Freshman Andrew Sopko started his first collegiate game and went three innings. Billy Moon pitched 4.2 innings in relief followed by Bigelow and Rucker.
In the morning game against the Rebels, senior Tyler Olson (1-1) went the distance for the Zags allowing eight hits and striking out eight.
However it was the UNLV pitching staff that slowed the Bulldogs offense allowing just three hits.
Rebels Kenny Oakley, who went seven innings giving up a pair of hits, and Andrew Beresford, who recorded the save, allowed just a hit.
The Gonzaga hits came from Gunsolus who led the game off with a single to left, Halcomb who doubled to left field in the fourth and Zach Abbruzza who singled in the ninth.
UNLV scored a run in the second inning on a sacrifice fly, another two on two outs bases loaded single in the sixth and an unearned single in the eighth.