Arizona takes 2 out of 3 from Bears

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Cal had opened on a tear in Pac-10 play, going 5-1 against USC and WSU to start the season. Arizona was the first conference ranked opponent, so it would be a good gauge for the Bears.

The opener was an up and down game for the Bears, with a dramatic ninth inning. Cal struck first, taking a 2-0 lead largely on the back of Austin Booker, who scored the first run and then drove in Mathews. Arizona would quickly strike back to make it 2-1, and then add another in the eighth off Erik Johnson to make it a 2-2 game. In the top half, the Bears loaded the bases again for Booker. Playing the hero again, he drove a single to make it a 4-2 game and put the Bears on top. However, Cal closer Matt Flemer gave it away with a pair of walks and doubles to give the Wildcats a 5-4 win.

Saturday’s game was rained out, so the Bears played a doubleheader on Sunday. In the opener, Arizona jumped out to a 5-0 lead, and rode that out to the victory. Despite a great comeback effort, the Wildcats took home their second game of the series, 10-8. In the second half, the Bears finally got their game rolling. A 17-7 shellacking sent the message that despite losing twice, these Bears were not a team that would roll over.

This weekend was not what the Bears wanted, but it’s not a poor result. With all the emotion involved with the decision to reinstate baseball, it’s understandable that the team didn’t play their best baseball. And going 1-2 on the road against a Top 25 team isn’t very bad at all. Getting back into their earlier rhythm will be very important, but is this is nothing more than a speed bump.

Up next is a series against a weak Washington team that is just 10-20 on the year. It should be a nice way to bounce back from losing their first Pac-10 series of the year. Go Bears!