This archived article was written by: Mike Gingell
The USU Eastern baseball team headed to Las Vegas with hopes to pull in a few wins from some good Arizona baseball teams. The hopes were dashed by a few mistakes that cost the Golden Eagles any win.
In the first matchup, early walks by Golden Eagle starter Kort Christoffersen led to a walk-a-thon for the Aztecs of Pima Community College. Golden Eagle pitchers Christoffersen, Longman, Mahalik, Thorpe and Tidwell gave up a combined 14 walks in route to a 12-9 loss. Fortunately, the Eastern offense was clicking and kept the boys from Price in the ball game. The offense was led by Chance Abrath, Ben Kraja and Alex Church who each had three hits.
In the second game Golden Eagle pitcher Tory Ulibarri shut down Scottsdale Community College by only allowing three hits over six innings of work. Unfortunately Scottsdale ace pitcher Colton Thomson did the same damage, but to USU Eastern’s offense. Both teams only managed four hits, but Scottsdales timely hitting kept USU Eastern from winning. The Golden Eagles lost 4-1.
In the third game USU Eastern faced Northeastern Junior College. Eastern starting pitcher Joe Barta threw excellent and only allowed four hits through seven innings of work.
Northeastern’s starting pitcher had the USU Eastern offense off-balance all game as he struck out 11 in the game. The offense did pound out 10 hits, but it wasn’t enough as an untimely two-run double knocked in the winning run late in the game. The Golden Eagles fell 3-2.
In the final game of the weekend the Golden Eagles faced a familiar foe in Pima. Again, the pitching staff didn’t throw strikes and gave the Aztec offense seven-free passes via walks. The offense kept the team in the game as they scattered nine hits over the course of the game. Denver Hansen led the way with three hits. The Golden Eagles fell 9-5. Head Coach Scott Madsen said, “we played well enough to be in every game this weekend, unfortunately we couldn’t pull it out. Those games will start to fall our way during the season.”
USU Eastern will be back in action Saturday, Feb. 18 against Utah State University. The games will be in Price at the college field on 900 north and 1100 east. The double header starts at noon. Admissions is free with a student ID card. Next weekend (Feb. 24-25, the USU Eastern will travel to St. George to square off against the Canadian JUCO national champions for a four-game series.