ST. GEORGE – The Fresno Pacific Sunbirds were able to escape the series sweep at the hands of Dixie State by putting up 15 runs on 20 hits Saturday in a 15-9 win in the final game of the season for both teams.
The Sunbirds broke open a close game with a huge sixth inning and cruised the rest of the way through the nine inning affair. Fresno Pacific led 8-6 going into that frame, but plated seven runs to turn the game into a rout.
FPU started the run barrage with three runs in the top of the second. Dixie matched it in the bottom of the inning when Donald Glover hit a three-run home run to right field. Fresno scored five consecutive runs over the next two innings and led 8-3 going into the bottom of the fourth.
Glover would again respond with a solo shot going the other way to left field. The Red Storm scored two more in the inning. Dalton Gust singled and, after advancing to second on a pickoff error, scored on a Drew McLaughlin single. McLaughlin would later score on a fielder’s choice throwing error. At the end of four Dixie trailed 8-6.
The deciding inning was the top of the sixth, when the Sunbirds batted around, scoring seven runs on six hits, including two home runs by John Koretoff and Joshua Banuelos and two doubles.
While the Dixie State defense and pitching held the Sunbirds the rest of the game, the Red Storm bats were not able to make up the difference. Tyler Blair hit a solo dinger in the seventh and Austin Bartleson hit a two-run double in the ninth to conclude the scoring.
Tanner Erwin got the victory for the Sunbirds in relief, evening his record to 1-1 on the year. Kody Christoffersen took the loss, falling to 6-3.
The Red Storm finish the year 35-15 overall, 26-6 in conference play. Fresno Pacific advances to 31-19 overall, 19-13 in the Pac West.
Dixie State ends the season as the Pacific West Conference champion and now will await the NCAA Selection process to determine who and where they will play for regionals.
“Last year we hosted the regionals,” said Dixie State head coach Chris Pfatenhauer. “However, this year there were two teams in front of us going into the weekend with the capability of hosting. We will have to see how the weekend and rankings shake out to see if we will host again this year.”
Notes: The Pacific West Conference champion Dixie State Baseball team has signed three players to National Letters of Intent during the spring signing period. Head coach Chris Pfatenhauer’s latest class includes one pitcher and two catchers.
Overall, all three players from this most recent class are from Utah. Two players come in after tenures at junior colleges while one will join DSU as a true freshman out of high school.
The Storm recruiting class includes talented left-handed pitcher Kolton Brost, catcher/first baseman Sam Hall, and catcher Jake Davison.
Monsa, UT/College of Southern Idaho/Payson HS
6-0 – LHP
Kolton is a left handed pitcher from College of Southern Idaho where he pitched two years for head coach Boomer Walker and pitching coach Nick Aiello. He has pitched as a starter, a reliever, and as a closer in his two season with the Golden Eagles, accumulating a 7-4 record with a 3.11 ERA and 84 strikeouts to just 24 walks. Kolton was a 2012 Salt Lake Tribune All-State selection for Payson High School.
Coach Pfatenhauer on Brost: “Kolton is a top flight left hander that offers us a variety of options. He can start, match up, and he can close. It’s crucial to have that type of guy in our conference with as many games as we play in any given week. He will be a big part of the Red Storm for the next two years.”
Ogden, UT/Western Nevada College/Bonneville HS
5-11 – Catcher/1B (L/R)
Sam comes to Dixie after a standout sophomore year at Western Nevada College. Hall is hitting .314 with 10 extra base hits and 22 RBI through 28 games this season. Sam was named All-Region and All-State in both 2010 and 2011 at Bonneville High School. As a senior, he hit .500 with 14 doubles, 9 homers and 50 RBI.
Coach Pfatehauer on Sam: “Sam is a very physical player with some tremendous offensive tools. Sam is a leader on and off the field, in his approach and work ethic. We look forward to adding another Western Nevada College player to our program, joining Evan Parker, Donald Glover, and Mike Umscheid; all former WNC players”.
Taylorsville, UT/Taylorsville HS
5-10 – Catcher (R/R)
Jake played at the varsity level as a freshman and sophomore, but missed his entire junior year due to injury. As a sophomore, Davison was named First Team All-Region while hitting .368 and helping his Taylorsville team to a State Runner-Up. He is currently batting .471 with six doubles and 19 RBI. MaxPreps has Davison ranked as the 18th best player in the state of Utah.
Coach Pfatenhauer on Davison: “Jake is an accomplished defensive catcher with tremendous leadership qualities. He comes from a quality program, playing for Jake Brown the past four years at THS”.
Stats: FPU 15, DSU 9
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