Nevada sweeps San Jose State to keep tournament hopes alive

Nevada sweeps San Jose State to keep tournament hopes alive

With a 3-2 victory on Sunday afternoon, Nevada (28-24, 14-16 MW) completed its first Mountain West sweep of the season by taking three games at San Jose State (19-32, 12-15 MW). With the win, Nevada has jumped the Spartans in the MW standings and currently sits in fourth, as only the top four teams make the conference tournament.

Nevada will be on a bye next weekend, and will have its fate decided by the San Jose State and Air Force series. As long as neither team sweeps the other, the Pack will secure the fourth and final spot in the tournament.

Three turned out to be the magic number for Nevada, as it needed three wins to stay alive in the race for the MW tournament and scored three runs in each of its wins.

The pitching for the Pack was phenomenal over the weekend, as the staff only allowed five earned runs in three games. In the series, the team put together a 1.55 ERA and held the Spartans to a combined .153 batting average and struck them out 26 times.

Jake Jackson earned the start and had one of his best outings of the year, tossing 4.2 innings while only allowing one run on three hits and recorded two strikeouts. Dalton Gomez (4-2) earned the win after tossing 2.2 innings in relief, and Grant Ford recorded his team-high fourth save of the season.

The Spartans took their first lead of the series in the second inning, as a solo shot by Troy Viola gave SJSU the 1-0 advantage. They would lose that lead in the fifth, when a passed ball allowed Joshua Zamora to score from third and tie the game.

The Pack took the lead thanks to some clutch hitting in the sixth frame, as catcher Marco Valenzuela blasted an RBI-single to left-center field to score Jaylon McLaughlin and give Nevada a 2-1 lead. What ended up being the game-winning run came in the same inning as Zamora scored Keaton Smith with an RBI-single. Zamora finished his afternoon with a team-high three hits.

The bottom of the eighth proved stressful, as the bases were loaded with only one out for the Spartans. Ford then came in relief, and only allowed a sacrifice fly in the inning to keep Nevada alive. He then tossed a perfect final frame to give the Pack the 3-2 lead.

Nevada will play its 2019 regular-season finale on Tuesday against Pacific at Don Weir Field at Peccole Park. Tickets are available online or by calling (775) 348-PACK.

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