NORTHRIDGE, Calif. — Nate Ring knocked a career-high five hits and the Cal State Northridge pitching staff held the first five batters in San Diego’s lineup to a combined 1-for-21 in an 8-4 victory Tuesday afternoon at Matador Field.
The Matadors (11-12) picked up their fifth straight win thanks to a solid start from Brandon Warner, who did not factor in the decision despite not allowing a hit until the fifth inning, and a resilient lineup.
After a controversial interference call, on a squeeze bunt attempt and errant throw that hit the runner, negated two Northridge runs and helped San Diego (16-9) escape a bases loaded jam without a run scoring, the Toreros immediately put two runs on the board to tie the game 2-2 and seemed to have stolen all the momentum.
But the Matadors didn’t cower or fade.
They did what head coach Matt Curtis said he doesn’t know his team would have done in the last two years since he has taken over — they responded. A walk, infield single and hit by pitch loaded the bases for Ring, who laced a double into left field to score a pair of runs and give the Matadors back the lead.
An inning later, CSUN scored another four runs to put the game out of reach. Josh Goossen-Brown had the big blow with a two-run double after a pair of San Diego errors and a bunt single loaded the bases. The Matadors clean-up hitter finished with two hits to give him six in five days after he had only five during the previous month of action.
Michael Livingston and Kyle Attl joined Goossen-Brown and Ring with multi-hit performances while Louie Lechich was the only Torero to record more than one hit. Louis Cohen (1-1) picked up the win in relief for Northridge while Trevor Bayless (2-2) took the loss for San Diego. Freshman Anthony Cortez struck out the only batter he faced, All-American Kris Bryant, with two on and two out in the ninth inning to record his first career save.
Northridge snapped Bryant’s 26-game streak of reaching base (dating back to the end of last season). Bryant was held hitless for only the fifth time this season and went 0-for-5 for only the second time in his collegiate career.
Check out the 25-shot photo gallery from Tuesday afternoon’s action: