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ST. LOUIS -- Pinch-hitter Jon Jay wasnt choosy when he came up to bat for the Cardinals in the eighth inning. Jay delivered a two-run double on the first pitch and right fielder Shane Robinson threw out the potential tying run at the plate in the ninth to help St. Louis hold off the San Diego Padres 4-3 Thursday night. "I was trying to be aggressive," Jay said. "I wanted something over the plate I could handle. I was able to do that." Jhonny Peralta hit an early two-run homer for the Cardinals, who moved ahead of Pittsburgh into second place in the NL Central. St. Louis remained two games behind division-leading Milwaukee. San Diego had its five-game winning streak snapped and fell to 16-9 since the All-Star break. Trailing by two in the ninth, the Padres loaded the bases with one out against closer Trevor Rosenthal. Pinch-hitter Jake Goebbert came through with an RBI single to right, but Alexi Amarista was cut down at home when he tried to score from second. The replay review lasted 4 minutes, 9 seconds. Padres manager Bud Black then was ejected by plate umpire Bob Davidson for continuing to argue the call. "You saw two major league players react to a play that indicated that a tag was missed," Black said. "You saw their catcher go back and try to tag our runner because he knew he missed him. You saw our player react knowing that he wasnt tagged. So you saw two experienced major league players react to a play that they both knew wasnt a tag. "Thats whats frustrating to us." Cardinals catcher A.J. Pierzynski, who entered in the ninth, disagreed. "I thought I got his arm," Pierzynski said. "I couldnt hear Bob. It was a big play in the game for sure. I couldnt see the umpire who was behind me. You just go. You hope they stay with the call. I think they got it right." After a four-pitch walk to Will Venable loaded the bases again, Rosenthal struck out Tommy Medica for his 36th save in 40 opportunities. San Diego reliever Alex Torres (1-1) thought he struck out Tony Cruz leading off the eighth, but it was ruled Cruz foul-tipped the ball. Replays appeared to show Cruz missed the pitch. Given another chance, Cruz singled on the next delivery. "I definitely fouled it," Cruz said. "I knew I foul-tipped it. I saw him (Davidson) looking at the first base umpire (John Tumpane) and he called it that way, too." Pinch-hitter Daniel Descalso walked on four pitches and Matt Carpenter loaded the bases with a single. Nick Vincent entered to face Jay, who went after the first pitch and drove a one-hop double off the wall in centre to snap a 2-all tie. Jay is 5 for 17 with three RBIs as a pinch hitter. He has a six-game hitting streak with seven RBIs. "It was a good feeling. You just want to contribute if youre not playing," Jay said. "You want to stay ready so if your number gets called you can go out there and contribute." The move by manager Mike Matheny paid off. "A huge hit for us. Hes been swinging the bat well," Matheny said. "Hes had a nice season for us." Seth Maness (4-2) earned the win with one spotless inning of relief. Peralta hit his 16th home run to drive in Matt Adams, who led off the second with a single. That lifted Peralta into a tie with Edgar Renteria (2000) and Daryl Spencer (1960) for the St. Louis single-season record for home runs by a shortstop. The Padres tied the score with two runs in the sixth after loading the bases with none out. Venable scored on a fielders choice. Medica, who had doubled, came home when Rymer Liriano beat out an infield single with two outs. Both starters went seven innings. Cardinals right-hander John Lackey improved on his last start in Baltimore that resulted in nine earned runs over five innings. Lackey allowed five hits and two runs with five strikeouts. Eric Stults gave up two runs and four hits for San Diego. Stults has allowed three or fewer earned runs in nine of his last 10 starts. TRAINERS ROOM Padres: 1B Yonder Alonso was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained forearm, retroactive to Wednesday. San Diego recalled INF Jace Peterson from Triple-A El Paso. Cardinals: Adam Wainwright had a familiar catcher for his bullpen session in Yadier Molina. On July 11, Molina had surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right thumb. Molina wore a brace on the thumb. He had yet to throw a ball or hold a bat without wearing the brace. ... Relief pitcher Jason Motte (strained lower back) is eligible to come off the disabled list Sunday, but he wont be ready. UP NEXT San Diego RHP Tyson Ross (11-10, 2.63 ERA) faces St. Louis RHP Lance Lynn (12-8, 2.97) in the second game of the four-game series Friday. STUMBLING ROOKIE Cardinals rookie Oscar Taveras was not in the lineup. Taveras went 2 for 20 on the recent six-game road trip, and his batting average dropped to .206. Robinson started in right. 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Akeem Spence Jersey (http://www.lionsfanspro.com/Black-Akeem-Spence-Lions-Jersey.html?cat=924) . -- ETwaun Moore had 14 points in 30 minutes, and the Orlando Magic defeated the Detroit Pistons 87-86 on Sunday night. LAS VEGAS -- T.J. McConnell laid out like a baserunner diving headfirst into a base. He missed the ball, but, after landing with a thud, jumped up and raced the other direction. Aaron Gordon, who did get the steal because of McConnells effort, flipped the ball ahead and Arizonas point guard ran under it, scoring an easy basket in transition. The play, and countless others like it in a spirit-crushing rout over Utah, let the rest of the Pac-12 field -- and the country -- know that one of the nations best defensive is in high gear for the post-season. Playing with a feverish intensity from the opening tip, Arizona raced through the record book and overwhelmed the stunned Utes in a 71-39 rout on Thursday to match the most lopsided game in Pac-12 tournament history. "We were locked in," Arizona coach Sean Miller said. "Everything that we wanted to do defensively, we were able to do it." Nick Johnson scored 14 points, McConnell 13 and Gordon added 11 for Arizona, which shot 53 per cent. That was just a side note to what the Wildcats were doing defensively. After playing two close games against Utah during the regular season, top-seeded Arizona (29-3) opened the tournament with a have-to-see-it-to-believe-it defensive performance. Energized by a raucous crowd that made it feel like the McKale Center, the Wildcats were at their lane-jumping, shot-contesting best against the Utes (21-11) to move into Fridays semifinals against Colorado or California. Arizona jumped on Utah early and had stamped its name in the record books by then, setting marks for fewest points allowed, fewest field goals (12) and lowest shooting percentage (25). The Wildcats held the Utes to 13 points in the first half, another record, and matched UCLAs 32-point win over Oregon State in 2006 to move into Fridays semifinals against Colorado or California. Jordan Loveridge and Delon Wright, Utahhs leading scorers, combined for seven points on 1-of-4 shooting and Utah lost by 13 fewer points than its 10 previous losses combined.dddddddddddd "When we get stops and get rebounds and get the push, our athleticism is really at play," Johnson said. "I think finishing with dunks and around the basket gets everybody going. Arizona had hoped to make a statement in the Pac-12 tournament to earn a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament. The Pac-12 regular-season champion Wildcats certainly did in their tournament opener, playing with an intensity Utah had no chance of matching after playing a close game against Washington the night before. The crowd at MGM Grand Garden Arena started chants of "U of A! U of A!" long before the opening tip and the Wildcats turned the game into a rout not long after the ball went up. Racing out for dunks and 3-pointers in transition set up by their climb-in-your-jersey defence, the Wildcats stormed past the Utes with an 18-2 run that put them up 22-6. Arizona kept its foot on the Utes behind its defence, contesting every shot, pass and dribble. The Wildcats held Utah to 5-of-19 shooting while forcing eight turnovers in the first half. Loveridge and Wright, who combine for over 31 points per game, took four shots and had no points between them. "They were really putting on a defensive clinic in the first half," Utah centre Dallin Bachynski said. Second half, more of the same. Utah missed its first 11 shots -- its first field goal came 9:15 in -- and at one point had five players on the court who had yet to score in the game. Yep, it was that bad. The only thing in doubt at that point was whether the Utes would get to 30 points. 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