Isbel Rings Up Three Hits In Win Over Matadors|
March 7, 2018
NORTHRIDGE, Calif. (UNLVRebels.com) - The No. 23 UNLV baseball team (12-2) concluded its two-game, midweek trip to California with a 7-5, come-from-behind win over the CSUN Matadors (8-5) Wednesday afternoon. The Rebels scored four straight runs over the sixth and seventh innings to erase a one-run deficit.
With the win, the Scarlet & Gray owns the second-best mark through 14 games of play, as the 1971 edition went 13-1.
The Rebels' offense got started early as Bryson Stott took the third pitch of the game over the right field fence at Matador Field for a quick 1-0 lead. The advantage grew to three runs three batters later when Max Smith hit a two-run double moments after Dillon Johnson and Kyle Isbel had reached base via walk and single off CSUN starter Hayden Shenefield.
The Matadors briefly flipped the momentum in their favor with two runs in each the third and fourth innings; however, Isbel would factor in the Rebels' comeback bid in the sixth and seventh. He led off the sixth with a double and later scored off a game-tying, bases-loaded RBI single by Jack-Thomas Wold. An inning later, Isbel connected on the would-be game-winning hit -- a two-run double -- that scored Stott and Johnson after the duo began the frame with a walk and a single, respectively. He came around to score one batter later off an RBI single by Nick Rodriguez.
Donavon McCrystal (1-0) notched his first win as a Rebel after striking out one in a scoreless sixth inning. Bryan Menendez earned his fourth save of the season when he tossed a total of five pitches for a 1-2-3 ninth -- all fly outs.
CSUN's Cassius Hamm (1-1) was saddled with the loss after he allowed two runs off of two hits and one walk in one inning of work.
THE TURNING POINT: In the seventh inning, Stott and Johnson made their way on base after a one-out walk and single, respectively. After the Matadors went to the bullpen, Isbel and Rodriguez connected on back-to-back run-scoring hits to put some breathing room between UNLV and CSUN.
REBEL OF THE GAME: Isbel went 3-for-5 with two doubles, two RBI and three runs.
QUOTABLE: "That was a great, bounce-back win versus a team that is very tough to beat at their place," said head coach Stan Stolte. "The bullpen was outstanding after (Paul) Richy kept us in the game for the first four innings. We still have a couple guys struggling offensively. We can't count on 3-to-4 guys to carry us every night. It will help getting (Nick) Ames back this weekend, hopefully. Today, was a gutsy, grind-it-out win."
STAT OF THE GAME: UNLV's 3-4 hitters -- Isbel and Rodriguez -- combined for a 6-for-10 performance with three RBI and three runs scored. Each batter went 3-for-5 in the affair.
UP NEXT: UNLV returns to Las Vegas and Earl E. Wilson Stadium Friday to open up a three-game, nonconference series with the Iowa Hawkeyes. First pitch for game one is scheduled for 6:05 pm, while Saturday and Sunday's affairs are slated for 2:05 pm and 1:05 pm, respectively. The Rebels will turn around and host the Utah Utes Monday afternoon at 2:05 pm.
SEASON TICKETS: UNLV still has 19 home games remaining to be played at Earl E. Wilson Stadium and fans can purchase their 2018 Rebel baseball season tickets online at UNLVTickets.com or by calling 702-739-FANS (3267). Season tickets are $90 for adults (13 and older), while seniors (62-plus), faculty and staff, and alumni are $75.
SINGLE-GAME TICKETS: Fans can purchase single-game tickets online and in-advance for only $5; however, they must be purchased through UNLVTickets.com three hours prior to first pitch. Single-game tickets are priced at $8 for adults, $6 for senior/faculty/staff and $4 for groups of 15 or more. As always, UNLV students (with Rebel Card) and kids 12 and under are always free.