SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Sophomore James Outman hit a solo home run in the second inning and five Sacramento State pitchers permitted only four UC Davis baserunners as the Hornets beat the Causeway rival Aggies 1-0 on Tuesday night at John Smith Field.
After the two teams played to a 7-6 final in Davis last Tuesday the second meeting between the schools was a pitchers duel of epic proportions. Both teams had only two baserunners through the first eight innings of the game, but there was some drama in the ninth.
UC Davis (9-17) got the tying run aboard to start the ninth on a leadoff single from Cameron Briggs. Brad Pluschkell tried to bunt Briggs to second but popped up to Hornet pitcher Alex Dentoni, who followed with a strikeout of Alex Aguiar. With two away Caleb Van Blake hit a grounder on the right side of the infield that hit Briggs on his way to second, ending the game.
Sacramento State (16-16) won the game with just one hit. UC Davis starter Matt Blais permitted just one other baserunner as Vinny Esposito drew a walk in the fifth inning. Blais took the loss though he threw a complete game and allowed just two baserunners with eight strikeouts.
Austin Root made his first start of the season and was sensational, allowing just two singles and no walks over five innings. Of Root's 54 pitches 44 were strikes and, with a double play in the first inning, he faced just one batter more than the minimum.
Tanner Olson had a strikeout in a perfect sixth inning before Ty Fox and Chad Perry followed with perfect innings. Dentoni earned his third save of the season as Hornet pitchers totaled five strikeouts and no walks and between them threw just 93 pitches with 72 strikes and only 21 balls.
The game lasted just one hour and 45 minutes, Sacramento State's shortest home game of the year by 22 minutes. It was the quickest nine-inning game played by the Hornets since a 1-0 home win over Louisiana Tech on April 27, 2013 that lasted just 1:42.
Outman extended his career-long hitting streak to eight games. He tied Esposito for the team lead with his fifth home run of the season.
Sacramento State hosts WAC-leading New Mexico State for a three games series starting Thursday at 6 p.m.