Arizona baseball dropped its last conference series of the season to California after suffering a 6-4 loss in Sunday’s contest at Evans Diamond in Berkeley, Calif.
While the Wildcats combined for 28 hits over the three-game series, they stranded 29 base runners and failed to execute in critical situations.
Despite striking early with a two-run first inning, the Wildcats were unable to retain the lead and ultimately fell apart in the middle innings.
“I felt like they played hard but just came up short,” Arizona head coach Andy Lopez said.
Sophomore pitcher Tyger Talley labored through his first two innings of work, surrendering a pair of runs to the Golden Bears off four hits.
In the fourth inning, Cal took advantage of a free baserunner after Talley hit shortstop Derek Campbell, before a double to left field pushed him across the plate to give the Golden Bears a 3-2 lead.
Talley received his fourth loss of the season and lasted 5.1 innings, allowing six runs on nine hits.
“[Talley] was strong until the fifth inning and then sort of hit a wall,” Lopez said. “I think what kind of hurt us today was Cody Moffett, who hurt his back Friday night. He wasn’t available for relief, which meant that we kept Talley in longer than we probably should have.”
The UA pulled ahead in the sixth inning after freshman infielder Willie Calhoun singled up the middle to score junior outfielder Tyler Krause and freshman infielder Michael Hoard doubled to right center to score Calhoun to make it a 4-3 ballgame.
Cal responded and took a 6-4 lead in the bottom of the frame after an RBI single and two-run double.
The UA threatened in the seventh with a two-out double and set the table with runners on first and second in the top of the eighth, but grounded into a double play to end the inning.
“We had numerous opportunities to put things away but couldn’t get anything going in terms of situational at-bats.” Lopez said.
Saturday’s contest was an offensive showdown between the Wildcats and the Golden Bears, which ended in extra innings when Cal catcher Mike Reuvekamp hit a walk-off single in the 12th to secure a 7-6 victory.
Friday ended in the Wildcats’ favor after senior pitcher James Farris turned in a complete game shutout. Arizona took the lead in the third inning and broke the game open with a five-run fifth inning to assure a 6-0 victory in the series opener.
— Follow Evan Rosenfeld @EvanRosenfeld17