Pacific Baseball: Tigers Drop Series Opener To No. 13 Cal State Fullerton, 6-2
Opening the first of a three-game series, the Pacific baseball team dropped a 6-2 decision to No. 13 Cal State Fullerton on Friday, April 30.
With the loss Pacific dropped to 25-15 overall and 7-6 in the Big West Conference while the Titans improved to 26-13 and 11-2 in conference play.
Pacific's offense had an uncharacteristically slow time against Cal State Fullerton's starter, RHP Dylan Floro, who kept the Tigers scoreless through seven innings while allowing only two hits.
During that span, Pacific tried to hold the Titans until they recorded their offensive stride, but Cal State Fullerton struck first with three runs in the top of the third inning. The following frame, senior RHP Marcus Pointer (Pacifica, Calif.) came out for his fifth inning of work, but allowed two more runs to his name.
In the top of the seventh, Pointer relinquished one final run, putting the Titans up 6-0. As the Tigers went scoreless for the seventh-straight inning, senior LHP Jamie Niley (Elk Grove, Calif.) was able to put a stop to the Titans' offense. Despite an error in the frame, Niley was able to retire the side without surrendering any further hits.
That led the way for the bottom of the eighth, when Pacific broke through the shutout. Down six runs to none and with two outs in the inning, senior Matt Fuson (Lodi, Calif.) reached on a fielding error by Floro off a bunt back up to the mound. Fuson, who stood aboard first, streaked home in the next at-bat, when junior Nick Longmire (San Diego, Calif.) doubled into left center field for his second double of the day. Next up came sophomore Brett Christopher (Livermore, Calif.), but before he got a chance to swing, Longmire stole third base. Christopher took a free pass to first base via a five-pitch walk, but on ball No. 4, a wild pitch sent Longmire home for a final score of 6-2.
In the top of the ninth, junior RHP Thomas Berolzheimer (Stockton, Calif.) came in relief and was the second successful pitcher to hold the Titans scoreless and without a hit as he faced the minimum. However, Pacific struggled in the bottom of the ninth and suffered the 6-2 loss to open the series.
Pointer took the loss on the mound for the Tigers and dropped to 6-3 on the year, while Floro improved to 3-0 in 2010. Offensively, Longmire paced Pacific with a 2-for-4 showing at the plate that included two doubles and Pacific's only RBI. His two doubles accounted for two of the Tigers' three hits on the night.
Game No. 2 of the series resumes on Saturday, May 1, for a 6 p.m. first pitch.