BIG INNING COSTS BASEBALL IN LOSS TO STANFORD
STANFORD, Calif. - The Stanford Cardinal posted six runs in the bottom of the eighth to take home a 6-4 victory over the Sacramento State Hornets on Wednesday, April 29 at Sunken Diamond.
With the loss, the Hornets fall to 23-20 overall, while the Cardinal improved to 20-18.
The Hornets and Cardinal used eight pitchers apiece in the contest, which was a 1-0 pitchers duel headed into the eighth inning. To that point, Sacramento State had scored the lone run of the game, as in the top of the first, junior Josh Powers connected on a one-out double, and with two down in the inning, senior Blake Crosby drove him home with a RBI single.
Sacramento State added insurance runs in the top of the eighth, as sophomore Brent Hottman singled to start the inning, was bunted over to second by his high school teammate, redshirt freshman Ivan Otsuka, and brought home a RBI single by senior Hunter Martinez. With two out in the inning, junior Tim Wheeler reached on an error, allowing Martinez to score from second to make the score 3-0. Wheeler then advanced to third on a single by Crosby, and scored on a RBI single by Jeff Roth, giving the Hornets a 4-0 lead.
But, after connecting on just three hits through the first seven innings, the Cardinal bats awoke in the bottom of the eighth. Colin Walsh led off with a single, and Joey August and Toby Gerhart both walked, loading the bases. The Hornets struck out cleanup man Kellen Kiilsgaard, but Brent Milleville took a 1-2 pitch over the left field wall for a home run, his ninth homer of the season and third career grand slam, tying the score at 4-4. Stanford was not done, as Zach Jones singled to short, stole second, and scored on a RBI double by Adam Gaylord, giving the Cardinal a 5-4 advantage. Jake Schlander, the ninth batter of the inning, provided the final insurance run with a RBI infield single, giving Stanford a 6-4 advantage heading to the ninth.
Cardinal closer Drew Storen (4-1) retired the side in order in the top of the ninth to pick up his fourth relief win, and the Hornets fell 6-4. Roth (2-1) picked up the loss, allowing three runs on four hits, walking two and striking out one.
Roth led the Hornets offensively with a 3-for-4 day at the plate, while Crosby and Hottman each went 2-for-4.
Sophomore Chris Baek started for the Hornets, allowing one hit in three innings, striking out one Cardinal batter. Hornet junior Trevor York, making his first appearance of the year following injury, pitched a 1-2-3 fourth inning. Freshmen Brent Harrison and Alex Taku, along with sophomore Trevor Paine and junior Brian Filice, combined to allow just one hit over three innings of work.
The Hornets will face San Jose State on Friday, May 1, in the start of a four-game Western Athletic Conference series at Hornet Field. First pitch is scheduled for 2 p.m.