Timely Hitting, Bullpen Propel Baseball to 5-4 Win Over Cal Poly
Feb. 19, 2018
SPOKANE, Wash. -- Gonzaga baseball came back from down two runs and got a homer from Branson Trube to beat Cal Poly 5-4 in the team's final game of the Surprise Tournament on Monday morning in Surprise, Ariz.
"Today was a good back-and-forth battle with Cal Poly," head coach Mark Machtolf said. "In a game that we weren't particularly good on offense, our young freshman arms Knueppel, Millett, and Spellacy all came in and picked us up in their debut outings, as well as solid defense again to wrap up the win."
GU came from behind to take the lead twice in the game, answering Cal Poly's offense each time the Mustangs took the lead. Down 4-2 in the fifth, the Zags got two in the bottom of the frame and one more in the sixth before shutting down Cal Poly's offense in the final three innings.
Ernie Yake, Jake Vieth and Austin Pinorini each collected two hits in the game, but the biggest came off the bat of Branson Trube. His homer in the sixth was the first of his Zag career and broke a 4-4 tie, proving to be the game's winning run.
On the mound, Gonzaga's bullpen went a combined 6.1 innings, giving up just one run on three hits with four strikeouts. After starter Justin Blatner gave way to Keaton Kneuppel in the third, the Zag pitching and defense came through. Kneuppel went 3.0 innings, Mason Millett got the win going 2.1 and Michael Spellacy pitched a clean ninth for the save.
After the Mustangs got on the board with one in the top of the first, GU answered in the bottom of the second. The Zags got two runs on a single from Gunnar Schubert that scored Pinorini and Vieth.
Cal Poly got those two back in the third and added one in the fifth to take a 4-2 lead, but GU answered again with a pair in the bottom of the fifth before Trube's homer in the sixth. The two in the fifth came on a dropped fly that allowed Pinorini to dash home and an RBI single from Vieth.
GU will be back on the road to wrap up the seven-game season-opening roadtrip at UC Irvine starting on Friday. Check GoZags.com for available links to game notes live stats.
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