DSU baseball battles during ‘Old Hammer Rivalry’

Members of the Dixie State University’s baseball team celebrate after winning their game against Utah Valley University on March 4. Annie Sorensen | Sun News Daily.

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The Dixie State University baseball team won two of three games against Utah Valley University on March 4-6.

The last time DSU played UVU, the Trailblazers won the game leading with 11 runs and ending with a score of 11-0.

The win streak against UVU did not let up until the last game as the Trailblazers won the first game on Friday 16-10, the second game on Saturday 12-1, but lost the third game on Sunday 8-3.

DSU vs. UVU – Game 1

The scoreboard stayed lifeless until the third inning. UVU was able to capitalize on five runs. DSU punched back with five more runs to tie the inning, starting with a two-run home-run from Shane Taylor, sophomore general studies major from Las Vegas.

The score stood 5-2 and the Trailblazers scored an additional two runs off a ground-out and throwing error from the UVU pitcher. With more miscommunication on the UVU wolverines, the Trailblazers were able to capitalize and score another run to tie the inning 5-5.

In the next inning, the Wolverines pulled the lead with two runs and the Trailblazers punched back with four more runs. Now leading the game, DSU did not let UVU score, and instead lead the inning with six runs.

UVU came back in the seventh inning and scored three runs, but it was not enough to take the win. DSU finished the game with one last run in the eighth with an end score of 16-10.

Kaden Hollow, a sophomore recreation and sports management major from Boise, Idaho, said they were able to stay focused and score after UVU started scoring runs.

“We kept the pedal to the floor, we kept pushing runs on the offensive side of the game,” Hollow said.

Hollow said one of the challenges in the game was just focusing on staying in the game even when the score was not in the team’s favor. To prepare for the second game, the team will focus on staying in the game and getting runs.

DSU vs. UVU – Game 2

DSU took an early lead in the first few innings with a total of 12 runs. DSU scored two runs in the first inning, followed by two more runs in the second inning, while UVU was unable to score any.

In the third inning, DSU stumped the pitcher and was able to get 11 batters in before UVU got an out. With bases loaded, Mathew Ivancich, a junior recreation and sports management major from Wildomar, California, hit a grand slam leading the inning 4-0.

The inning was still not over and the Trailblazers were able to load the bases with walks to Hollow and Jagun Leavitt, a senior alumnus from St. George. The inning ended in a double and a single run, ending the inning 8-0.

The Trailblazers led the game 12-0 until UVU was able to score their first and only run in the fourth inning.

Since UVU was trailing by over 10 runs, the game finished early with the 10-run lead rule, also known as the mercy rule.

Leavitt said since the last time they played UVU they have improved their hitting, and it was a big factor in the game.

“We hit the crap out of the ball with 10 hits today,” Leavitt said.

The team was able to take advantage of the opportunities they were given and get multiple runs on the board.

“They were throwing fastballs down the middle and we were hitting it hard,” Leavitt said.

DSU vs. UVU – Game 3

In the last game of the series at the Bruce Hurst Field, DSU took their first loss. The team trailed by five runs in the end. The game ended with a score of 8-3.

The game was scoreless until the fourth inning when UVU scored four runs and DSU came back with three. The score then remained zeros until UVU could capitalize on runs in the eighth and ninth innings. The Trailblazers were unable to punch back and tie up the score.

Head Coach Chris Pfatenhauer said the team had to stay focused and locked in for the last game of the series to keep the win streak going.

“We wanted to win, and stay locked in and not get ahead of ourselves and worry about the wrong things,” Pfatenhauer said. “We need to worry about winning each pitch.”

Pfatenhauer said one of their biggest focus points was to worry about one thing at a time, one pitch at a time.

“When the other team makes pitching changes we always meet and look at the scatter report and talk about the pitcher,” Pfatenhauer said.

The team did this to prepare for anything they weren’t aware of. DSU was unable to capitalize on runs as they were held to six hits.

DSU upcoming game

The Trailblazers will play the next three-game series against Sacramento State University on the John Smith Field March 11-13.