DAVIS, Calif. - A two-run home run by Chance Ross and dominating pitching on the mound from the Bluejay pitching staff propelled Creighton baseball to a 4-3 win over UC Davis on Sunday. Reese McGraw earned the win on the day (2-1) while Kurt Spomer picked up his second save on the season. The Jays earn the series win after also picking up the 7-6 win on Friday night.
Creighton improves to 5-3 on the season, while the Aggies now sit at 6-5. Four different Bluejays had a pair of hits on the day, as Ross, Jake Peter, Nick Judkins and Anthony Bemboom combined for eight of the nine hits. The Aggies finished the day with six hits.
The Jays hold the 2-1 lead in the overall series against the Aggies, as this was the first time the two programs have met on the baseball field.
For the third straight game, the UC Davis Aggies put the first run on the board in the bottom of the second. After a pair of batters reached to lead off the inning, the Aggies laid down a sacrifice bunt and advanced on a ground ball out to Alex Staehely at short. A great defensive backhand play by Chance Ross and scoop by Nick Judkins at first recorded the final out of the inning, stranding an Aggie runner on third.
Creighton responded with a run of their own. With two outs in the top of the third inning, Ross singled and advanced to second on a Jake Peter walk. A single by Judkins scored Ross, but Peter was tagged out trying to advance to third. After three innings, the teams were tied 1-1.
After being dominant on the mound through the first four innings of play, UC Davis starter Tom Briner had to leave the game in the top of the fifth. After a ball bounced away from Aggie starting catcher Scott Kalush, he stood up and tried to peg off Brennan Murphy at second, but Briner was standing in the line, and took the throw right in his chin. Murphy, who had singled and stolen second, scored when Ross blasted his first home run of the season over the left field fence. After four and a half innings, the Bluejays led 3-1.
Andrew Urban finished his outing with just one run and surrendering one run. The junior was relieved by Chase Webb in the bottom of the fifth, one runner on first base. Webb recorded the first out via sacrifice bunt, the second with a ground ball to second and stranded the runner on third with a strikeout to end the fifth.
The Aggies again tied up the game in the bottom of the sixth, when the fifth Aggie hit by pitch on the day came in to score. A double by the Aggie designated hitter Kevin Barker with two outs scored both Evan Wolf and Brett Morgan. The game was tied, 3-3.
Freshman Jake Peter stepped up with a pair of runners on in the seventh inning, and singled through the right side to again put Creighton up, 4-3 this time. With one out, Brennan Murphy drew a walk and Gabriel Thibodaux reached on an error by the Aggie shortstop. Peter struck the first pitch he saw to the right side, scoring Murphy.
Bluejay reliever Reese McGraw got into a little trouble in the bottom of the seventh inning, with the Aggies threatening to again tie the game up. A leadoff single by Young followed by a sacrifice bunt and a ground ball that was bobbled by Peter put Aggies on the corners. McGraw stranded both runners, striking out the second out and forcing a fly ball to Murphy to end the frame.
Creighton will now play a pair of midweek games, first at California on Tuesday and then at Sacramento State on Wednesday. Complete game recaps along with live stats are available through www.gocreighton.com.
NOTES: Andrew Urban did well in his second start for the Bluejays, but did run into a few control problems early. The junior pegged four Aggie batters in his outing on the mound. The last Creighton pitcher to hit three batters in a game was Jonas Dufek against Northern Colorado, 3/5/2010 ... Creighton's defense was stellar today. Chance Ross made a pair of snags, one a backhand, that helped the Jays keep Aggies off the basepaths ... Creighton has now used a different starting lineup in all eight games ... Nick Judkins again was a scooping machine at first base. The senior dug a pair of balls out of the dirt to prevent additional runs from scoring in the second and fifth innings ...