Wolf Pack swings and misses at Bakersfield
For the Nevada Appeal
The Nevada Wolf Pack baseball team came up empty Sunday.
Cal State Bakersfield pitcher Mike McCarthy struck out a school-record 11 hitters in just six innings as the Roadrunners beat the Wolf Pack, 6-5, in front of 328 fans at Hardt Field.
The Roadrunners, now 7-8 on the year, had lost six games in a row before winning two of three this weekend against the Wolf Pack. Bakersfield won 13-8 on Friday and the Pack won 1-0 on Saturday on a home run by Brian Barnett.
The Wolf Pack, now 8-6, jumped all over the Roadrunners and McCarthy to start the game, taking a 4-0 lead in the second inning.
Barnett and Nick Leid each had RBI doubles and Brock Stassi drove in a run with a triple in a three-run first inning. Stassi then drove in Kevin Rodland in the second inning with a single for the four-run lead.
The Pack, though, could have scored more than three runs in the first inning. The Pack ran itself out of the inning as both Kevin Rodland and Nick Melino were thrown out trying to steal second.
The Pack also could have scored more runs in the second but Barnett fanned with runners on first and third to end the threat.
The Wolf Pack, though, went the next four innings without a baserunner and barely making contact against the 6-foot-3 right-handed McCarthy.
McCarthy retired 12 hitters in a row — the third through the sixth inning — and fanned eight of the 12. The junior from Brentwood, Calif., struck out five in a row at one point (the last two outs in the fifth and all three in the sixth).
The Wolf Pack struggled to make contact all weekend in Bakersfield. The Pack struck out an alarming 35 times in the three games, 13 times each on Friday and Sunday and nine times on Saturday.
Bakersfield took a 5-4 lead after six innings but the Pack tied the game at 5-5 in the seventh after McCarthy was removed. Joe Kohan doubled, went to third on a wild pitch and scored on a sacrifice fly by Cullen Mahoney.
Bakersfield, though, won the game with a run in the bottom of the eighth off Pack reliever Tyler Graham. Graham pitched well, allowing two hits and a run in two innings while striking out three.
Rickey Denham started for the Pack and struggled through his 4.1 innings. Denham allowed six hits and four runs, walked two and tossed three wild pitches.
The Wolf Pack will return to Peccole Park to face Sonoma State at 2 p.m. The Pack will host San Francisco on Wednesday, also at 2 p.m.