BASEBALL HAS COMEBACK FALL SHORT IN 7-6 DEFEAT AGAINST SANTA CLARA
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - The Sacramento State Hornets came back from a 6-2 deficit against Santa Clara, but lost a 7-6 decision on Tuesday, April 29 at Stephen Schott Stadium.
With the loss, the Hornets fall to 19-24, while the Broncos improve to 27-16.
Santa Clara opened the scoring in the bottom of the first as Matt Long hit a leadoff home run to right field, giving the Broncos a 1-0 lead. Before the inning was over, Tommy Medica would produce a RBI single and Jon Karcich would provide a sacrifice fly to give the home team a 3-0 advantage. The Hornets would get two runs back in the top of the second, as senior Wes Oberlin connected on a deep home run to center field to lead off the inning, cutting the lead to 3-1, before the Hornets would get an RBI groundout by senior Ryan Blair to trail by just one run.
The Broncos, however, scored three more runs in the bottom of the second, as Long hit a two-run triple down the right field line, and Ryan Conan connected on a RBI single, giving the Broncos a 6-2 lead. The score would stay that way until the top of the seventh, when the Hornets would get a sacrifice fly from senior David Flores and a RBI triple by junior Gabe Jacobo to pull to within two runs at 6-4.
The Hornets would tie the score at 6-6 in the top of the eighth, as junior Blake Crosby provided a RBI while reaching on an error, making it to second base as the throw attempt to retire him at first went into the Santa Clara dugout. Junior Hunter Martinez then singled home redshirt freshman Jay Jennings, who pinch ran for Crosby, to complete the Hornet comeback. The Broncos had an immediate answer, however, as Gabe Alcantar lead off the Santa Clara half of the eighth with a walk, advanced to second on a sacrifice by Brady Fuerst and scored on a RBI single by Long, his fourth RBI of the day, giving Santa Clara a 7-6 lead.
The Hornets had a chance in the ninth, as with two out and Oberlin on first base following a fielders choice, junior Jeff Roth hit an infield single, and both runners advanced to second and third on a Bronco throwing error on the play. Freshman Derrick Chung then walked, loading the bases with two out, but the Hornets were unable to bring the tying run home, falling 7-6.
Mark Willinksy (3-2) picked up the win for the Broncos, pitching the final 1.1 innings while allowing one hit and walking a batter. Junior Mike Weiss (0-1) picked up the loss, allowing one run on one hit, the Long single, in one inning of work. Neither starter factored in the decision, with the Hornets having four relievers out of the 'pen combining for five innings of shutout baseball.
Oberlin led the Hornet charge as the only player with multiple hits, going 3-for-5 at the plate, only a triple short of the cycle. Five other Hornet hitters had a hit apiece, while six Hornets, Blair, Crosby, Flores, Jacobo, Martinez and Oberlin each provided a RBI. Long went 4-for-5 with four RBI to lead the Broncos, while ending the game just a double short of the cycle.
The Hornets will travel to the state of Hawaii for a four-game Western Athletic Conference series against the Rainbows, with the first game taking place on Friday, May 2 at 6 p.m. Hawaiian Time.