Pacific Baseball Drops Opener At Northridge, 6-1
RF Brett Sullivan, 2B Louis Mejia and 3B Dustin Torchio each posted two-hit afternoons, but Cal State Northridge LHP Jerry Keel hurled his second-straight complete game as the Matadors topped Pacific, 6-1, in the opener of a three-game series.
Keel scattered eight hits, walking none and striking out four to go the distance. Northridge LF Cal Vogelsang picked up three RBI singles to pace the Matadors.
Northridge got on the board in the second as C Alex Mercado doubled to left center and came in to score on Vogelsang's single off Pacific LHP John Haberman.
In the fourth, the Matadors got a leadoff walk and a passed ball before 1B Josh Goossen-Brown singled to third. Torchio dove to his left and smothered the ball, but his throw to first was not in time setting up runners on the corners. Haberman struck out RF Chester Pak, but Vogelsang singled up the middle for one run, and LF Nicolas Osuna reached on an error to stretch the lead to 3-0.
The Matadors tallied again in the sixth, as Goossen-Brown singled to left, was sacrificed to second, took third on a fly out and came around on another Vogelsang single.
Pacific got on the board in the seventh, as Sullivan singled to right and raced all the way to third on a passed ball. C Jason Taasaas drove Sullivan in with a groundout as the Tigers pulled within 4-1.
But the Matadors tacked on a run in the seventh, as DH Michael Najara doubled to the corner in right, and 2B Michael Livingston singled up the middle. With runners on the corners, SS Kyle Attl posted a sacrifice fly before RHP Bryce Lombardi coaxed a groundout to end the frame.
Mejia and PH Robby Mansfield led off the eighth with singles, but after a fielder's choice set up runners on the corners, Keel forced a ground ball that turned into an inning-ending double play.
The Matadors manufactured a run in the eighth, as Pak walked, stole second and after RHP Kevin Hammann struck out Vogelsang, Osuna singled through the left side for the final run of the ballgame.
Sullivan added a single in the ninth, but Keel polished off the complete game with a comebacker on his 97th and final pitch.
Pacific falls to 10-26 overall, 3-10 in Big West play, while the Matadors improve to 23-18 overall, 9-4 in BWC action. Haberman (1-5) took the loss, allowing five earned in six-plus innings. Keel moved to 6-1 on the season with his second-straight complete game and one earned run allowed.
Game two of the series is Saturday, at 1 p.m., with RHP Jake Jenkins for Pacific taking on Northridge RHP Calvin Copping.