Spartans Take Series Opener 6-5 Against Nevada

April 13, 2017

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RENO, Nev. -- Jack Veasey's pinch hit three-run homer in the top of the eighth inning broke a 3-3 tie game to propel the Spartans to a 6-5 series-opening conference road win against Nevada on Thursday afternoon.  

The Spartans evened their Mountain West record to 7-7-1 (13-18-1 overall), while the Wolf Pack dropped to 5-11 in the conference (9-26 overall).  

Coming into the game, Veasey had been riding a career-best, three-game hitting streak and Spartans head coach Jason Hawkins took his chances pinch hitting Veasey for Cal Koga

With two outs and runners on first and second, Veasey turned on a fastball from Nevada reliever Grant Ford and drove it over the left field fence for his first home run as a Spartan and put San Jose State up, 6-3.  

Spartan closer Josh Goldberg pitched the eighth and the ninth innings to earn a two-inning save, his third save of the season.  

In the eighth, Goldberg inherited a runner at first with no outs.  After a balk and a wild pitch, Justin Bridgman singled to make it a 6-4 game.  With the tying run at third and the go-ahead run at second, Goldberg got Nevada's cleanup hitter, Grant Fennell, to ground out and escape the inning.  

In the ninth, Goldberg allowed a leadoff double to Kaleb Foster. However, Foster was erased off the bases when Cole Krzmarzick lined out to second to double up Foster.  

The double play was a key play because with the bases empty, the next Nevada hitter, Marco Valenzuela, hit a home run to cut the Spartan lead to 6-5.  The Pack got a two-out single to put the winning run at the plate ,but that was the closest Nevada would get with Goldberg inducing a grounder to end the game.  

Spartan starter Matt Brown pitched five innings, striking out a career-high eight batters.  With the Spartans holding a 2-0 lead, Brown got into trouble in the fourth when Nevada put up three runs on four hits, two hit-batsmen and an error.  

The Wolf Pack held onto the 3-2 lead until the seventh when Chris Williams blasted an opposite field home run to tie the game.  It was Williams' first home run since March 19 when he hit one against Nevada at Muncipal Stadium. That home run, coincidentally, also tied up the game.  

Hilario Tovar (2-2) picked up the win, pitching 1.1 innings.  

The game-time temperature was 46 degrees, but with the strong wind, it felt like in the 30s.  The first pitch was pushed back by 30 minutes due to a mixture of rain and snow.  

Similar conditions are expected for game two of the series on Friday, April 14. First pitch is 2:00 p.m. PT.