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Utah Valley Wins Third-Straight GWC Baseball Tournament Championship

Three-time GWC Tournament Champion Utah Valley University

Three-time GWC Tournament Champion Utah Valley University

May 26, 2012

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UVU 10, HBU 6Get Acrobat Reader

OREM, Utah -

Utah Valley broke a 4-all tie with five runs in the top of the eighth en route to winning their third consecutive Great West Conference Baseball Tournament Championship over Houston Baptist by a score of 10-6, Saturday afternoon at Brent Brown Ballpark.

"We've done everything we can to control our destiny. 40 out of 41, that's incredible," said UVU head coach Eric Madsen. "Our guys have stayed together all year. They did an unbelievable job of never panicking and trusting each other."

Austin Heaps started UVU's eighth inning rally with a leadoff single. After Burgess' homer, Kai Hatch singled and Exon doubled to put runners on second and third. Butcher then drove home Hatch with a double to right. Rickenbach brought both Exon and Butcher home on a two-run base hit to put the Wolverines up 9-4.

Houston Baptist (28-33) managed to push home two runs in the eighth but Exon got one back in the ninth with a solo home run to left.

In the bottom of the ninth, Josh Swenson pitched around a leadoff double by retiring the next three hitters to set off a dog pile just past the pitcher's mound.

The Huskies grabbed the momentum early with a three-run second inning off UVU's starter Jeremy Gendlek. Gendlek did limit the damage, however, as the right-hander got out of a bases-loaded jam by inducing a inning-ending double play.

The Wolverines answered, however, with a two-run top of the third to get the home crowd of 1,612 people back in the game. Cole Butcher started the scoring for UVU (47-12) with an RBI single through the right side then two batters later Sean Moysh plated Willie Pratt with a sacrifice fly to left center.

Exon stayed hot at the plate for the Wolverines with an RBI single in the fourth to even the score at 3-all.

UVU grabbed its first lead of the game in the sixth on a RBI single by Pratt but the lead was short lived as HBU's Kolby Arnst collected an RBI single in the seventh.

Gendlek finished with a no-decision after scattering 10 hits, four runs allowed in 6.1 innings of work.

Swenson was the winning pitcher of record, improving to 3-0 on the year, with 2.1 innings of relief. The righthanded hurler got the Wolverines out of a jam in the seventh by forcing HBU's Samm Wiggins to pop out with the bases loaded.

HBU's Dalton Schafer (5-9) lasted seven full innings in the losing effort for the Huskies.

Four Wolverines collected two RBIs as Exon led the team with a 4-for-5 effort from the plate.

Josh Foust and All-Tournament team member Collin Hetzler each had two RBI for the Huskies.

2012 GWC Baseball All-Tournament Team

Jonathan Carpen, Chicago State
Kolby Arnst, Houston Baptist
Jake Gonzalez, Houston Baptist
Collin Hetzler, Houston Baptist
Jeff Campbell, North Dakota
Kris Kwak, North Dakota
Andrew Thome, North Dakota
Tony Crudo, Northern Colorado
Jake Johnson, Northern Colorado
Angel Ibanez, Texas-Pan American
Billy Burgess, Utah Valley - Tournament MVP
Cole Butcher, Utah Valley
Alex Exon, Utah Valley
Jake Rickenbach, Utah Valley