Aggie rally comes up short

UC Davis came back from an 8-2 deficit in the ninth with two outs to tie the game, but Nevada claimed the 9-8 victory on a squeeze play in the bottom half of the inning.

After two groundouts, freshman Tino Lipson jump started the Aggie rally that featured six runs on six hits.

With the loss, UC Davis drops to 18-26 overall (6-9 in the Big West Conference).

After freshman John Williams and senior Ryan Allgrove grounded out, Lipson singled to right and pinch runner sophomore Drew Lassen moved to second on a wild pitch.

Senior David Popkins walked, followed by a pinch hit RBI double by sophomore Austin Logan to set up sophomore Spencer Brann’s two-RBI single up the middle and all of a sudden the Aggies trailed just 8-5.

Senior Paul Politi singled, and another wild pitch put both runners in scoring position for freshman Kevin Barker, who came through with a two-run double to left.

Senior Eric Johnson followed with an infield single off the Wolf Pack pitcher’s glove, moving Barker to third. Nevada’s reliever first hit junior Mike Mazzara to load the bases, then hit Allgrove to score the tying run. Freshman Austin March struck out to end the inning.

In the bottom of the ninth, sophomore Harry Stanwyck struck out the leadoff hitter, but Nevada’s Jameson Rowe then doubled down the right field line and moved to third when Barker bobbled the ball.

Two intentional walks loaded the bases to set up force-outs at any base, but Nevada’s bunt converted a successful suicide squeeze to steal the 9-8 victory.

UC Davis returns home for four straight games, beginning with a Big West matchup against Long Beach State.

Senior starter Dayne Quist, who missed his last start with an injury, is expected to be back on the mound this weekend.

The Aggies, who have nine homers in the past 10 games, will need to keep the power stroke going when facing the Dirtbags, who are second place in the Big West and third in team pitching.

“It’s late, but I think we’re finally buying in to what we’ve been trying to do all season,” said head coach Matt Vaughn, referring to the team picking up steam at the plate. “They’re starting to see the results when they do buy in and when you get results like that they take notice.”

The series begins Friday at Dobbins Stadium at 2:30 p.m.

RUSSELL EISENMAN can be reached at sports@theaggie.org.

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