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Red Hot Wildcats Too Much for Ducks in Pac-10 Opener
Release Date: 03/26/2010
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TUCSON -- Jett Bandy homered and scored twice, and freshman Kurt Heyer allowed two runs over six innings to back Arizona's 9-3 Pac-10 victory over Oregon in the conference opener for both teams.

The Ducks (17-7, 0-1) got a four-hit performance from Marcus Piazzisi and a strong relief effort from Zack Thornton, but the Wildcats (19-4, 1-0) fast start with six runs over the first two innings was too much for the visitors to overcome.

Oregon starter Tyler Anderson (4-2) didn't make it out of the second, allowing six runs - four earned - on seven hits and a pair of walks in 1.2 innings of work. It was the southpaw's shortest outing of the season and first loss since Feb. 25 at Hawaii.

Thornton saved the bullpen by pitching closing out the game, allowing three runs on seven hits with six strikeouts in 6.1 innings.

All but one starter had at least one hit for the Wildcats, who banged out 14 hits in all. Bryce Ortega was 3 for 4 and Steve Selsky went 2 for 4 with three runs scored.

Heyer (4-0) surrendered only one earned run and struck out five as Arizona extended its winning streak to 14 straight.

Oregon managed only three runs despite 10 hits and five walks. The Ducks hit into three double plays and left 11 runners on base.

The Wildcats wasted no time in getting their conference season off to a rousing start, batting around and plating four runs in the bottom of the first. After a one-out single by Rafael Valenzuela, Bandy hit his fifth home run of the year to straight away center field.

Robert Refsnyder then reached on a two-base error and came home on Bobby Rinard's double to right to make it 3-0, before Seth Mejias-Brean brought in Rinard with a double of his own.

Arizona's first-inning damage to the Ducks could have been worse, but leadoff batter Joey Rickard was picked of after opening the frame with a walk.

Steven Packard's first collegiate home run to lead off the top of the second cut the lead to 4-1, but two more Wildcat runs in the bottom of the inning chased Anderson and gave the home team a five-run cushion.

Thornton was dinged for a run in the fourth after issuing a leadoff single to Bryce Ortega, who advanced to third on a sacrifice and ground out before being balked home for UA's seventh run.

The Ducks got one back in the top of the fifth. Curtis Raulinaitis drew a leadoff walk, advanced to second on a passed ball and came home when KC Serna singled and right fielder Steve Selsky couldn't come up with the ball cleanly.

Arizona answered with a two-spot in the bottom of the inning for its largest lead at 9-2.

Eddie Rodriguez singled home Piazzisi in the ninth for the game's final run.

Game 2 of the three-game series is Saturday at 6 p.m.
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