Cats bring the bats vs. Butler - Tucson News Now

Cats bring the bats vs. Butler

TUCSON, Ariz. – Brandon Dixon homered twice and Johnny Field scored four runs to pace 20th-ranked Arizona to a 14-2 victory over Butler on Tuesday evening at Hi Corbett Field.

Arizona (14-5) scored in each of the first four innings, including four runs in the first and five in the fourth to give starting pitcher Tyler Crawford an 11-1 lead. Crawford (W, 3-1) was strong on the mound, earning the victory with just one unearned run allowed on two hits in 5.1 innings. The southpaw struck out four and did not issue a walk.

Dixon, who went 4-for-5 with five runs batted in and three runs scored, became the first player – Wildcat or opponent – to register a multi-homer game at spacious Hi Corbett Feld since Arizona began playing at the historic facility in 2012. Current Arizona volunteer assistant coach Josh Garcia was the last Wildcat to homer twice in the same game, doing so against North Dakota State at Kindall Field/Sancet Stadium on the school's campus in 2011.

Field was 2-for-4 in the game, but it was his walk with two outs in the first inning that ignited the Wildcats' offense. Dixon, who finished a double short of the cycle, tripled in Field to put Arizona on the board. Kevin Newman, who was 4-for-5 in the contest, later drove in a pair of runs with a single, while Sam Parris added a run-scoring double to put Arizona on top, 4-0.

The Wildcats tacked on another run in the second, before Dixon led off the bottom of third with his second home run of the season. The junior third baseman drilled the ball to the deepest part of the ballpark, clearing the red line just to the left of the 410-foot sign on the outfield wall.

In the fourth, Butler (5-8) was forced to go the bullpen after starting pitcher Kevin Lenkman issued three consecutive walks to open the inning. Riley Moore then drove in a run with a single, and a wild pitch allowed another run to score. With two on, Field laced a triple for a pair of RBI to force Lenkman from the game.

Arizona added an insurance run in the sixth inning and then scored twice in the bottom of the eighth. After Field singled following a dropped foul ball, Dixon stepped in to deliver a two-run shot to the scoreboard in left field.

Lenkman (0-2) suffered the loss after yielding 11 runs – eight earned – on six hits and five walks. He pitched three-plus innings before turning the game over to Kyle Allen, who gave up three runs – one earned – on eight hits over the final five innings.

Crawford won for the third time this season as a midweek starter. He turned the game over to Nick Cunningham with one down in the sixth, and the reliever tossed 2.2 scoreless innings with three strikeouts. Augey Bill finished the game in the top of the ninth, allowing an unearned run on two hits.

The Wildcats' 14 runs scored were their most in eight games since also totaling 14 against Utah Valley on Feb. 27. The 14 base hits tied the season high for the club set on two previous occasions and marked the sixth straight game with double-digit hits.

The two clubs conclude the brief midweek series on Wednesday. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m. (MST) at Hi Corbett Field.

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