By Ryan Navaroli |Staff Writer|
Coyotes men baseball team excited the crowd as they won 9-5 in their final game against the Cal State East Bay Pioneers.
The Coyotes split the series 2-2.
Senior first baseman Richard Mount exceeded all expectations Sunday afternoon with just one swing of the bat.
Mount’s pinch hit grand slam in the 8th inning capped a six-run rally for the Coyotes’ thrilling come up from behind victory.
“I was really just looking for something I could put a barrel on. I knew I was not going to see a lot of fastballs after already hitting a homerun in the series. I hit a slider that hung just enough,” said Mount.
Freshman pitcher Jake Meloche went the distance in the final game of the series. Meloche yielded eight hits, two walks, and two earned runs in his seven innings of work.
“My mission objective was to throw the ball where I needed it to be with some conviction. Attacking the zone was crucial for me. I needed to limit my pitch count and get every hitter out in four pitches or less. That is what I did for the most part and is what allowed me to go deep into the game and into the 7th inning,” said Meloche.
The Coyotes put on the pressure early in the bottom of the 1st inning.
Senior catcher Nick Oddo hit a three-run home run off the right field scoreboard giving the Coyotes a quick 3-1 lead.
Strong pitching from the Pioneers would keep the Coyotes in check in the next six innings.
The Pioneers would then lead 6-3 until the celebration began in the bottom of the 8th inning.
Junior catcher Jose Hernandez started the six-run 8th inning rally when he singled to right field. Junior second baseman Kevin Meriwether would advance Hernandez after he was hit by a pitch.
Senior outfielder Nolan Almodovar then reached base after laying down a well executed bunt.
Senior first basemen Trevor McMaster tied the game at 5-5 when he hit a laser two-run double.
Oddo then walked to load the bases setting up the ultimate spectacle for Mount.
Mount would come off the bench in the most critical part of the game. He worked a 2-1 count before hitting a mammoth grand slam home run over the left-center wall giving the Coyotes a 9-5 lead.
“Being a pitch hitter is a hard job, you only have one at-bat to help your team out,” said Mount.
Senior closer Brian Jipp would pitch a perfect ninth inning with a pair of strikeouts to secure the victory.
Junior pitcher Matt LeVert earned his first win in relief pitching one third of an inning.
The Pioneers were led offensively by Zac Chuvala. Chuvala finished 3-for-4 at the plate with an RBI and two runs scored.
The Coyotes look to continue their winning streak on the road against San Francisco State on Friday, Feb. 28 at 2p.m., Saturday, March 1 and Sunday March 2 at 11.