DSU opens final home series with win over AAU

File photo, Dixie State University vs. Academy of Art University, St. George, Utah, Apr. 6, 2017, | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News

ST. GEORGE – The Dixie State baseball team rebounded from its first conference series loss last week with a 12-3 win in the series opener against Academy of Art University at Bruce Hurst Stadium Thursday night.

“We have not lost a conference series since 2013,” said Dixie State head coach Chris Pfatenhauer. “We were a little down afterwards, but the guys got a couple of days off and with this being senior weekend, we have a lot of family here. The team came out and played well tonight.”

Dixie State starter Dylan File admitted that, despite pitching the complete game, it was a rough game.

“I wasn’t pitching my best stuff,” he said. “I can usually get in a zone and hit my spots. Tonight I was missing and getting behind in the count, especially in the middle innings. I had to rely on my off-speed stuff. Around the seventh inning, I started pitching better.”

Dixie State’s Dylan File (33) multiple exposure image, Dixie State University vs. Academy of Art University, St. George, Utah, Apr. 6, 2017, | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News

File got plenty of run support as the team collectively batted .400, garnering 12 hits total. Tyler Baker and Trey Kamachi both had three hits, including at least one for extra bases. Miles Bice hit safely twice.

The Trailblazers took an early 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first on two sacrifice flies by Kamachi and Logan Porter. AAU tied the game in the fourth inning, but the tie was short-lived as DSU responded in the bottom of the inning with another Porter sacrifice.

In the fifth, AAU tied the game again. And again the Blazers responded quickly with a two-run double by Baker. After the sixth inning, File did not allow any baserunners for the Urban Knights. Meanwhile, DSU would score seven more runs to put the game away.

Dixie State’s Miles Bice (1), Dixie State University vs. Academy of Art University, St. George, Utah, Apr. 6, 2017, | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News

In the sixth, Jake Davison hit a double down the left-field line to score Tyler Mildenberg. In the seventh, Kamachi hit a two-run triple, then scored on a fielder’s choice RBI by Porter. Later in the inning, Davison scored on a bases-loaded walk to Trey Reineke.

Mildenberg capped off the night with a two-run home run over the right field fence.

“He had been throwing high all night,” said Mildenberg. “I had hit a couple of line drives earlier. I decided to wait for one to come in low and when it did, I jumped on it.”

Even then Mildenberg was not sure that the ball would get out. “I hit it to right field,” he said. “That is the deepest part of our park. I felt it would make it to the fence, for sure, but I didn’t take the foot off the gas till I had rounded first.”

Dixie State’s Trey Reineke (14), Dixie State University vs. Academy of Art University, St. George, Utah, Apr. 6, 2017, | Photo by Robert Hoppie, ASPpix.com, St. George News

File (6-1) collected the win, giving up three runs on six hits and striking out six. The Blazers, who dropped from the national rankings this past week, move to 26-9 overall and 15-6 in the PacWest.

AAU falls to 13-22 overall and 9-12 in conference play. The two teams resume their series Friday with a doubleheader beginning at 2 p.m. On Saturday, the Blazers will play their last home season game and honor this year’s seniors. Game time Saturday is set for noon.

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2017, all rights reserved.

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