Thursday, May 22, 2014 | 10:08 p.m.
John Richy surrendered two first-inning runs today for the UNLV baseball team in its Mountain West tournament opener against Fresno State.
But Richy wasn’t bothered.
The junior right-hander settled down to strike out a career-best 12 batters in 7 1/3 innings, leading the Rebels to a 5-3 victory at their Earl E. Wilson Stadium.
Richy, who took over as the Rebels’ ace two weeks ago after Erick Fedde was lost for the season with an elbow injury, struck out the side in the first, second and sixth innings.
He improved to 11-3 on the season, showing yet again the Rebels’ deep pitching staff is a strength. And Brayden Torres recorded the final five outs, including striking out two batters to close the eighth inning in relief of Richy, to earn the save.
Also credit the UNLV offense in this victory.
They quickly erased the 2-0 deficit in the bottom of the first inning, scoring runs on an RBI groundout from Patrick Armstrong and run-scoring single from Morgan Stotts.
The Rebels took the lead for good in the fourth inning of Joey Swanner’s two-run single. A.J. Hernandez provided an insurance run in the eighth with an RBI double.
UNLV (34-21) plays San Diego State at 7 p.m. Friday.