SAN FRANCISCO – Sacramento State (27-17, 13-5 WAC) took a 2-1 lead into the eighth inning of Tuesday afternoon's game at San Francisco (25-20, 12-9 WCC), but was unable to hold on to it as the Hornets fell, 3-2, to the Dons.
Sacramento State scored the game's first run in the first inning as Steven Moretto brought home Keith Torres with a bases-loaded ground out. The Hornets doubled that lead two innings later when Torres smoked an RBI-double into the left center gap.
Torres had an excellent afternoon for the Hornets, going 3-for-4 with two doubles, an RBI, a run, and a walk in Tuesday's contest. His three hits were tops on the team and he was the only Hornet with a multi-hit effort. Torres, who played all eight innings at shortstop, also made a number of nice plays in the game.
Leading 2-0, Sacramento State gave up its first run of the game in the third inning as Tyler Villaroman grounded out to score the Dons' first run, making it a 2-1 game.
That is how things remained until the eighth, when a walk and a hit by pitch put two runners on with two outs for San Francisco. Again, it was Villaroman delivering in the clutch, smashing a two-out, two-run double to the right-center gap, scoring both runners and giving the Dons a 3-2 lead.
Hornets center fielder Bronson Grubbs nearly made a spectacular catch on the play, going into a dive before colliding with the wall. He had the ball in his glove but as he hit the ground, the ball came loose and fell to the ground.
Despite an excellent two-out walk by pinch-hitter Nick Iwasa and a two-out knock by Grubbs in the ninth, the Hornets were unable to force extra innings, falling to the Dons, 3-2.
On the mound, starter Travis Adams was excellent for the Hornets in what was his longest start since March 16. Adams allowed just one run on four hits over five innings of work. He did not walk a batter and struck out one. He threw 44 of 67 pitches for strikes and recorded nine ground ball outs, including two double-plays.
The loss on Tuesday was charged to Stone Churby. After a 1-2-3 seventh inning, Churby struggled in the eighth, walking two batters and hitting another. He had some help thanks to a poor Dons bunt and a caught stealing, but left with two outs and two on. Both would score on Villaroman's double.
Typically, Tuesday's game is one the Hornets would have won. Sacramento State came into Tuesday's game with a 9-5 record when scoring first. They were also 25-5 when holding opponents to fewer than five runs. Additionally, Tuesday's loss is the Hornets' first when taking a lead into the eighth inning (had been 20-0).
The Hornets will remain on the road as they next travel to Northern Colorado for a three-game weekend conference series against the Bears. The Bears are 9-28 overall this season and just 5-13 against league opponents. That series starts Friday, May 3 at 2 p.m. PT.
For more details on this weekend's series – including links to video and audio broadcasts, notes, recaps, and more – be sure to visit the 2019 Sacramento State baseball homepage online at HornetSports.com.