WACO, Texas - Baylor dropped its first game of the day against Lamar, 8-0, but the Bears bounced back in the nightcap to take a 6-1 win against UC Irvine during the second day of the QTI Baylor Classic on Saturday night at Baylor Ballpark.
With the split, the 25th-ranked Bears are now 9-3 entering Sunday's 3 p.m. game against Lamar. UC Irvine dropped to 5-5 on the season, while Lamar improved to 3-5. UCI and Lamar play at 11 a.m. Sunday.
"I thought their guy (Dziedzic) was exceptional," head coach Steve Smith said. "I thought he pitched to the park, he pitched to the conditions. If we're playing it like the conditions were in the second game, not that we would win the game, but it would have been a different game. There were some balls that were really well-struck that didn't get anywhere."
The Bears nearly ended the shutout bid in the ninth after Dan Evatt led off with a double and Josh Ludy followed with a single, but Evatt was thrown out after falling halfway between third base and home plate.
Max Garner (0-1) took the loss after allowing six runs on eight hits in 4.0 innings. Four Baylor relievers held the Cardinals to one earned run over the final five innings, but the Bears were unable to get anything going offensively.
Ludy had half of the Bears' six hits in a 3-for-4 effort. Max Muncy's career-long streak of 28 straight games reaching base safely and his 10-game hitting streak both came to an end with a 0-for-3 day.
Garret Autrey led Lamar at the plate with three hits, two RBI and one run scored. Darian Johnson, Jeff Abt, Seth Dornak and Brad Picha had two hits apiece for the Cardinals.
Garner struck out the side in order in the first inning with just 11 pitches, but Lamar chipped away with runs in the second, third and fourth innings before breaking the game open with three in the fifth to take a 6-0 lead.
Lamar could've had a bigger inning in the second, but Logan Vick threw out Thomas Henk at the plate on a Wayne Stanley two-out RBI single that gave the Cardinals a 1-0 lead. Dornak had a RBI double in the third and Picha hit a solo homer in the fourth.
Doug Ashby came on in relief with the bases loaded and no outs in the fifth. He got Dornak to fly out without any damage, but Autrey hit a slow roller to third for a RBI single to put Lamar up 4-0. Ashby then struck out Henk for the second out, but Picha followed with a two-run single through the left side to extend Lamar's lead to 6-0.
The Bears had a chance to cut into the deficit in the fourth after Ludy and Logan Vick hit two-out singles, but Dziedzic got Joey Hainsfurther to fly out to end the threat. Dziedzic retired the leadoff batter in each of the first eight innings and retired the first two batters of an inning in seven of nine frames.
Game Two: Baylor broke a 1-1 tie with five runs in the bottom of the eighth. Joey Hainsfurther drew a pinch-hit, bases-loaded walk to break the tie, and the Bears kept adding on from there.
Trent Blank allowed only one run in a career-long 7.0 innings, but he did not factor in the decision after turning the ball over to his bullpen to start the eighth with the game tied 1-1.
Blank's outing was pre-determined to be a short start, but a low pitch count allowed him to work deeper into a game than he had in his first three seasons at Baylor. He needed only 81 pitches to work 7.0 innings, and all four hits allowed were singles.
"I did think seriously about taking him out after five (innings), because at the start of the sixth he was right in the middle of the order, it was the left-handers, and it was either go to Crayton (Bare) then or basically wait through the order one more time," Smith said. "Trent got through it that inning, so it was kind of an inning-by-inning basis after the fifth."
Blank, who is 4-0 on the year, saw his ERA rise to 0.81 after allowing one run. He's surrendered only two runs in 22.1 innings this season, and all nine hits he's allowed have been singles.
Baylor got on the board in the first inning when Nathan Orf led off with a double and scored on Logan Vick's two-out RBI single, but UC Irvine starter Andrew Thurman escaped without further damage. Thurman allowed one run on seven hits in 5.0 innings, but he did not factor in the decision.
The Anteaters tied the game in the third with the help of a pair of walks from Blank. The bases were loaded with one out after two walks and a single, and Christian Ramirez hit a sacrifice fly to right-center field to tie the game, but Blank got Jordan Fox to flyout to keep the game knotted at one.
Max Muncy and Josh Ludy led off with consecutive walks, Vick loaded the bases with a perfectly placed bunt single down the thirdbase line, and Hainsfurther brought in the eventual game-winning run with a pinch-hit walk. Michael Howard followed with a RBI single that UCI left fielder Kris Paulino lost in the lights, Lawton Langford brought in two more runs with a single up the middle, and Orf capped the scoring with a RBI single to put the Bears in front 6-1.
Bare got three straight groundouts in the ninth inning to close out his first career victory. He retired all four batters faced in 1.1 innings to notch the win. Jimmy Litchfield (0-1) took the loss for UCI after giving up five runs on three hits and four walks in 2.0 innings of relief.
Vick finished 3-for-4 with a run and one RBI, while Orf went 2-for-4 with a walk, one run and one RBI and Howard went 2-for-3 with a walk, one run and one RBI. Langford went 2-for-3 and drove in a pair of runs. D.J. Crumlich and Connor Spencer had two hits apiece to account for all four of the Anteaters' hits.
Baylor's last game of the weekend is a rematch against Lamar at 3 p.m. Sunday at Baylor Ballpark. The Bears are scheduled to start sophomore southpaw Brad Kuntz on the mound, while Lamar has not yet announced a starting pitcher.