In the Big West, runs were at a premium on Sunday. It was either early first inning runs that proved to be the difference or late-inning heroics that determined the outcome. See which teams scored early or completed a late-inning rally to finish off the weekend.
All that plus more in Sunday’s Southern California college baseball roundup that features video interviews and photo galleries from Long Beach State, Fullerton & San Diego State:
UC Irvine 3, UC Davis 1
For the third consecutive game against UC Davis (17-23, 3-12), UC Irvine employed the strategy of taking a late lead and then handing the ball over to closer Sam Moore.
Renae Martinez delivered a two-run single for his first career RBI for Irvine (28-14, 11-1) in the top of the ninth inning and Moore locked down his nation-best 19th save in the bottom half of the inning. Evan Brock picked up his seventh win of the season, allowing one run on four hits. Jonathan Munoz had three of Irvine’s five hits.
San Diego 6, Pacific 4
San Diego (28-16, 12-9) salvaged a win at Pacific (23-21, 12-9), winning 6-4 behind PJ Conlon (5.1 IP, 2 ER), who picked up his seventh win. Six different Toreros drove in a run with Connor Joe leading the way offensively, going 3-for-3 with three runs, a double, his seventh homer and a walk.
#29 Cal State Fullerton 2, Hawai’i 1 (11 innings)
Wearing Rick Vanderhook’s No. 28 jersey, Grahamm Wiest likely made Vanderhook proud by needing only 106 pitches and allowing just four hits and one run in 10 innings pitched Sunday night.
But it wasn’t until after Wiest had left the game that the Titans (21-17, 6-6) were able to scratch across the game-winning run on a suicide squeeze bunt by senior Jared Deacon.
Assistant head coach Mike Kirby talks about the Titans’ extra-inning win and series sweep:
Cal State Fullerton needed extra innings for the second time to complete the weekend sweep of Hawai’i (15-25, 3-12). The Titans hit the ball relatively well, knocking 10 hits and stinging a number of hard-hit outs. But they managed only a Tanner Pinkston RBI double through the first 10 innings, despite getting a runner on third base in the fifth, seventh, ninth and tenth innings.
In the 11th inning, Austin Diemer was hit in the shoulder by a 2-2 fastball, stole second base and advanced to third on a Clay Williamson sacrifice bunt. On the second pitch of the at bat, Deacon got a fastball and laid down a perfect bunt to the right side, allowing Diemer to score without a throw.
Koby Gauna picked up the win in relief of Wiest. He needed only nine pitches for a 1-2-3 top of the 11th inning. Scott Kuzminsky took the tough-luck loss after allowing just the game-winning run in 5.2 innings of relief of Jarret Arakawa (4.2 IP, 5 H, ER), who was on a strict 75-pitch count making his first appearance since an injury.
Hawai’i head coach Mike Trapasso talks about the strong pitching and the disappointing series sweep at Fullerton for the Rainbow Warriors:
The two first basemen led the way offensively. Tanner Pinkston was 3-for-5 with an RBI for Fullerton while Hawai’i’s Mark Flores was 2-for-4 with a run driven in.
CBD photographer Shotgun Spratling provides some of the photos from the Goodwin Field action Sunday:
Santa Clara 8, Loyola Marymount 7
Loyola Marymount (25-19, 13-8) blew a late 7-5 lead, allowing Santa Clara (19-24, 10-8) to score three runs in the eighth inning to take an 8-7 victory in the series rubber match.
LMU catcher Kevin Garcia was 2-for-4 with a double and four RBI while Tanner Donnels had three base hits and three RBI. For the Broncos, Greg Harisis was 3-for-5 with three runs and two doubles.
Long Beach State 1, #2 Cal Poly 0
The Dirtbags scored an unearned run in the first inning and made it stick. Nick Sabo and Ty Provencher combined for a two-hit shutout of No. 2 Cal Poly to give Long Beach State a huge series victory. Click through for a Full Recap, Photo Gallery and Video Interviews.
UC Riverside 7, #23 UC Santa Barbara 3
UC Riverside scored four runs in the top of the first inning and rode it to a 7-3 win to avoid the sweep at UC Santa Barbara (26-11, 7-8). The Highlanders (18-20, 7-5) loaded the bases and got an RBI groundout by Nick Vilter and a two-run double by David Andriese, who came around to score on a Drake Zarate single.
UCSB battled back, scoring three runs off starter Ben Doucette, but Riverside lefty Dylan Stuart came on and turned off the spigot, slamming the door with 5.2 scoreless innings in relief. He allowed only two hits to pick up his second win of the year. Vilter and Francisco Tellez both scored a pair of runs, but Andriese was the only hitter in either lineup with multiple hits, finishing 2-for-3 with a run and the two-run double.
#28 TCU 3, Cal State Northridge 0
Apparently, Cal State Northridge (15-28) wasn’t allowed to bring its offense into the state of Texas. For the second time this season, the Matadors couldn’t get much of anything going offensively during a Texas road trip. In an early season trip to Sam Houston State, Northridge managed three runs. This weekend, it managed just two runs, including back-to-back shutouts to end the series.
Of course, scoring against the Horned Frogs (30-13) is one of the toughest things to do in the country right now. Sunday’s shutout was the sixth in the last eight games for TCU. The pitching staff, led by former Cal State Fullerton pitcher Kirk Saarloos, has allowed just two earned runs during that stretch for a 0.25 ERA!
For CSUN, Brett Balkan and Nico Garbella both went 2-for-3, including a triple by Garbella, but still the Matadors couldn’t scratch across a run against Tyler Alexander and two relievers.
San Diego State 14, San Jose State 3
Brad Haynal went off! The San Diego State catcher hit a two-run homer, a three-run homer and a two-run double to lead the Aztecs to a 14-3 win in the rubber match against San Jose State (13-31, 7-17). Haynal finished 3-for-4, 3 R, 2B, 2 HR, 7 RBI.
The Aztecs (31-13, 12-9) knocked 16 hits, including Greg Allen and Tim Zier going a combined 7-for-9 at the top of the lineup. Mark Seyler was the beneficiary, picking up his seventh win despite allowing 13 hits in seven innings. For the Spartans, Sheldon Daquioag was a perfect 4-for-4 while Matt Lopez was 3-for-4, R, 3B, RBI.
CBD photographer David Cohen provides his top photos from the game: