By Thomas Nelshoppen of The Baseball Zealot
Weather had played major tricks to us college baseball fans in the Midwest. There must have been a record number of postponements, cancellations and suspensions. Unfortunately, the rains came to Ann Arbor Friday evening and interfered with the Regional games. At least, Arizona and Eastern Michigan got their full game in so let’s start with them
Arizona 13 Eastern Michigan 7
The Ann Arbor Regional began Friday afternoon at Ray Fisher Stadium with #1 seed Arizona Wildcats from the Pac-10 taking on the Eastern Michigan Eagles from the Mid-Atlantic Conference. A story of David and Goliath, if you will.
Arizona took a quick 5-0 lead by the 3rd inning off EMU pitcher Sean Hoffman. Eight Wildcat batters came to the plate in the 2nd getting knocking 3 hits and scoring 4 runs. In the third inning, Arizona added an extra run on three hits.
Eastern Michigan didn’t give up though and batted around in the lineup in the fifth against Arizona starter Preston Guilmet. That inning, they took the lead 6-5, scoring six runs culminating in a two-run double by Jeff Davis.
The rest of the game was pretty much all Arizona. The Wildcats scored three runs in the bottom of the sixth sending Hoffman to the showers. Later in the eighth for good measure, they added five more runs thanks in much part to C.J Ziegler’s three-run double. Ziegler for the day was 3 for 4 with 4 rbis and 3 runs.
Once Guilmet had left the game with 6 runs allowed in 4-plus innings, the Wildcat bullpen did their job. Ryan Perry, Daniel Schlereth, and Jason Stoffel combined to allow just one run in 4 2/3 innings of work.
Michigan 5 Kentucky 1 (6th inning, suspended)
Friday evening, #2 seed Michigan and #3 Kentucky squared off with the threat of rain clouds looming. They only got as far as the 6th inning before rain stopped the game with Michigan leading 5-1. Weather permitting, they will pick things up at 11:00am (Eastern) on Saturday.
All runs at this point have been scored in the second inning. Kentucky got out to a slim 1-0 lead in the top of inning when Tyler Howe singled scoring Ryan Wilkes.
Michigan responded by scoring five in the bottom half of the inning highlighted by a Jason Christian two-run double. UK starter Chris Rusin was pulled after 1 1/3 innings in favor of Aaron Lovett. At this point, UM pitcher Zach Putnam has allowed 6 hits in 5 innings. But he’s kept most of them from scoring, allowing only one run.
I’ll update everyone on the game tomorrow. If the score of the suspended game holds, Eastern Michigan will take on Kentucky at 2pm and Michigan will face Arizona at 7pm.
Think good weather!