BERKELEY - Senior left-hander Kyle Porter notched a career-high 11 strikeouts and junior shortstop Derek Campbell hit the game-winning homer in the eighth inning to lead Cal baseball to a 5-4 victory over Utah Saturday (March 29) night at Evans Diamond.
With the win, the Golden Bears improved to 13-12 overall and 2-3 in the Pac-12. Utah, which had fallen to Cal, 4-2, on Friday, dropped to 9-16 and 0-8 in league play.
Porter (4-1, 8.2 innings, five hits, four runs, three walks, 11 strikeouts) had a stellar night, not only recording a career-high 11 strikeouts, but throwing a career-high 8.2 innings and retiring 18-straight batters from the third through the ninth inning.
Campbell finished the evening 3-for-4 and hit his Pac-12-leading fifth home run of the season to left center field with two outs in the bottom of the eighth inning off of Utah reliever Tyler Banks.
Cal had scored the first run of the game in the bottom of the first inning on senior designated hitter Devon Rodriguez's RBI double. The Utes came back with two runs off of Porter in both the second and third innings for a 4-1 advantage, but the Bears came back with three runs in the bottom of the third inning on a Utah wild pitch, an RBI by sophomore first baseman Nick Halamandaris and a sacrifice fly by junior second baseman Brenden Farney to tie the contest.
The score remained 4-4 while Porter shutdown the Utes. Campbell then gave the Bears the lead, and senior right-hander Trevor Hildenberger earned his sixth save of the season by getting the final out in the top of the ninth inning.
"It was a great effort from Kyle Porter," said Cal coach David Esquer. "He struggled a little bit early in the game, but then found it and was superb. It was also a good comeback for us offensively after we have been struggling at the plate this year. And, Derek Campbell had another outstanding game for us."
Cal will host Utah in the final game of the three-game series on Sunday, March 30 at 12 p.m. at Evans Diamond. The contest will be shown on the Pac-12 Networks.