WEST SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Sacramento State junior right fielder Nathan Lukes went 2-for-5 with a two-run home run and three RBIs to tie the program career hits record and four Hornet pitchers held UC Davis to one run on three hits in a 7-1 win Tuesday night at Raley Field.
Lukes now has 229 career hits, tying the program record set by Aurelio Jackson from 1998-2001. His was one of four two-hit games on Tuesday for the Hornets, who totaled 12 hits in the contest. Sacramento State (26-23) swept its season series with UC Davis (26-20-1) and has now defeated the Aggies in 10 of the last 11 meetings between the teams.
Senior Scotty Burcham was 2-for-3 on Tuesday for his 10th consecutive multi-hit game and his 15th multi-hit line in the last 19 contests. He now has 224 career hits for fourth place in program history. Sophomore Brandon Hunley and freshman Dan Deely both went 2-for-4 as eight of the nine Hornet starters had hits in the game.
On the mound senior Jake Stassi picked up his first win as a Hornet, allowing just one run on two hits with one walk and two strikeouts over six innings, throwing five scoreless innings after allowing a run in the first. Freshman Jeremiah Moore, junior Tyler Beardsley, and junior Sutter McLoughlin each tossed scoreless innings to close out the game.
The Aggies got their one run early, drawing a leadoff walk before a double by Nick Lynch, the national leader in doubles this season. Tino Lipson scored from third on a sacrifice fly from Austin March, but in the bottom of the first inning the Hornets got that run back after Burcham doubled and scored on a groundball to second by freshman Devin Lehman that was booted by Lipson.
The Hornets blew it open in the second inning with four runs. Five of the first six hitters in the inning reached as Hunley drove in junior Chris Lewis for the first run. After a bunt single put runners at second and third freshman Bronson Grubbs reached on another bunt single to drive in Hunley. Lukes then doubled home Deely and Grubbs would score on a sacrifice fly by Burcham.
In the fourth inning Grubbs reached on catcher's interference and Lukes capped the scoring with his sixth home run of the year, hammering a 2-0 pitch into the Hornet bullpen beyond the right field wall.
Sacramento State left six men on base while UC Davis stranded five and neither team had a base runner after the top of the seventh inning. Stassi hit a batter in the third but retired 16 consecutive batters around the hit-by-pitch between the double by Lynch and a single by him with two out in the sixth.
McLoughlin threw just four pitches to get the last three outs in the ninth. UC Davis starter Nat Hamby lasted just 1.1 innings and was tagged for six runs (five earned) on six hits. Reliever Matt Blais went 4.2 and allowed six hits but just two runs (one earned).
There was only one walk issued in the game and it was a five pitch walk to the first batter of the contest, UC Davis leadoff hitter Tanner Bily. The three Hornet relievers combined to throw just 11 balls over the last three innings of the game.
Sacramento State hosts Northern Colorado for a doubleheader starting at noon on Saturday and a single game on Sunday. The WAC series was scheduled to be played in Colorado but was moved to Sacramento due to forecasted rain throughout the weekend in Greeley.