Rebels Rally in Final At Bat to Defeat Aztecs 5-2
April 21, 2013
LAS VEGAS, Nev. - UNLV scored three unearned runs in the bottom of the eighth to break a 2-2 deadlock and defat San Diego State, 5-2, to complete a sweep of the Aztecs in their three-game Mountain West series Sunday afternoon in Las Vegas. It marked the third contest in a row that the Rebels (27-12, 11-7 MW) scored the winning runs in their final at bat.
With the loss, SDSU saw its record fall to 19-20 overall and 10-8 in conference play as it slipped into third place in the league standings.
For the third day in a row the Aztecs scored in the first inning to take an early 1-0 lead. Matt Muñoz led off the contest with a single to center and would advance to third when a pickoff attempt by UNLV hurler Kenny Oakley was thrown past first base. A ground out to shortstop by Tim Zier brought Muñoz home with the game's opening run.
UNLV came back two innings later when it strung together four straight one-out singles to plate a pair of runs against SDSU starter Philip Walby to go up 2-1.
That lead was short-lived, however, as Greg Allen's RBI single in the next inning brought home Ty France to make it a 2-2 game. France had doubled with one out moved to third on Evan Potter's ground out to second.
In the fateful bottom of the eighth, a one-out fielding error allowed Brandon Bayardi to reach base safely. After a fly ball to right for the second out, Justin Jones drew a walk before Erik VanMeetren delivered a double to the fence in center field to drive in both runners. Patrick Armstrong followed with a single through the right side to score VanMeetren to provide the final 5-2 score line.
That hit ended the afternoon for Walby (1-3), who finished his 7.2 innings of work allowing the five runs on 11 hits with a pair of walks and three strikeouts. UNLV starter Kenny Oakley (4-2) finished his complete-game effort with two runs (one earned) allowed on nine hits with three walks and three strikeouts.
Matt Muñoz, who made his debut as the Aztecs' leadoff hitter in the game, finished with a pair of hits and a walk with a run scored. Outfielder Steven Pallares led SDSU with three hits while Ty France had two hits including a double and scored the Aztecs' other run.
San Diego State will be back in action on Tuesday, April 23, when it hosts 21st--ranked UC Irvine at 6:00 p.m.at Tony Gwynn Stadium.