Cal State Fullerton baseball kicked off its home-opener series rather slowly on Feb. 25 against Gonzaga University. The Titans lost all three games against the Bulldogs and now have a record of 1-5.
The Titans went 10 innings against Gonzaga on Feb. 27 to wrap up the three-game series, but ultimately fell short, 3-2. After losing two games straight, Gonzaga’s defense was unmatched.
Gonzaga picked up the lead in the second inning when they scored on an unearned run. A double steal from Enzo Apocada and Jack Machtolf allowed them to put up a point on the board.
Gonzaga came back in the third inning to score another run. A sacrifice fly from Shea Kramer allowed Tyler Rondo to run back to home plate, which gave Gonzaga a 2-0 lead.
After being held scoreless for three innings, Fullerton scored a run in the fourth inning. The Titans hit into a double play, but junior outfielder Carter White was able to score a run and cut Gonzaga’s lead to one.
With one more chance to tie or take the lead, Fullerton headed into the ninth inning down one run. Brendan Bobo hit a single, which allowed Damone Hale to score, tying the game at two before heading into extra innings.
In the 10th inning, Gonzaga’s Rando hit a single through the right side, which allowed Savier Pinales to score and take a 3-2 lead. The Titans were scoreless in the bottom of the 10th inning, which gave Gonzaga the win.
Gonzaga’s Trystan Vrieling had an incredible game as he pitched for eight innings and struck out 11 while allowing just three hits and one earned run.
The Titans suffered another loss, 2-0, against Gonzaga on Saturday evening.
Fullerton’s starting pitcher, Tyler Stultz pitched six shutout innings and struck out five and only allowed two hits and two walks. Michael Weisberg made his second appearance this season and pitched for two innings. Weisberg had two shutout innings while striking out two batters.
Both teams were scoreless until Gonzaga scored late in the top of the seventh inning. Mason Marceno was able to score on a wild pitch, which gave the Bulldogs a 1-0 lead.
The Bulldogs were able to score another run in the next inning. Pinales scored on a wild pitch, allowing Logan Johnstone to advance to third which was the final run of the contest.
Gonzaga made program history with six double plays, the most in a single game.
Down by two, the Titans picked up hits in the bottom of the eighth and ninth innings, but Gonzaga’s fifth and sixth double play prevented Fullerton from scoring a run.
Although Fullerton outhit Gonzaga, they were not able to plate a run and had less players at bat than Gonzaga.
The Bulldogs’ defense was unmatched compared to the Titans. Gonzaga’s pitcher William Kempner held the Titans to just two hits in six scoreless frames. Kempner was Gonzaga’s starting pitcher and pitched 5.1 innings. He walked five players and struck out four.
The Titans suffered a 12-3 loss at Goodwin Field on Friday.
Gonzaga put up an impressive performance with right-handed pitcher Gabriel Hughes throwing 62 strikes out of 103 pitches in six innings. Hughes managed to keep the Titans at bay with nine strikeouts.
Sophomore infielder JJ Cruz brought in Fullerton’s first run in the bottom of the fifth, after Gonzaga had already posted five. White grounded into a fielder’s choice that brought Cruz back to home plate.
Senior outfielders Jason Brandow and Jake Gentry managed to add two more runs to the board for Fullerton in the final frame. Two singles from junior Jake Harvey and Gentry brought in Brandow for Fullerton’s second run of the night. Gentry scored the third and final unearned run for the Titans off of an error from Gonzaga’s second baseman.
Sophomore right-handed pitcher Cameron Repetti started the first four innings on the mound for Fullerton. Repetti gave up six hits and four runs, three of them earned.
Catcher Tyler Rando drove in three runs for Gonzaga and finished with three RBIs as he went 3-5 for the night.
Fullerton will host Kansas State on Tuesday at 6 p.m.
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