FULLERTON, Calif. -
Cal State Northridge was held without a hit as the Matadors (18-37, 6-17 Big West) fell to the Cal State Fullerton Titans (31-22, 13-10 Big West) on Friday night at Goodwin Field. The Matadors had four baserunners reach against Justin Garza and held the Titans to just four hits of their own on the night, but a pair of home runs proved to be the difference in the game.
Things moved quickly from the outset as both pitchers were locked in from the start. Jerry Keel saw the first batter he faced reach on an error but followed it up by picking him off of first. Keel went on to strike out six batters in 6.0 innings of work.
Garza delivered for the Titans to earn the first no-hitter for the program since 2001. He did issue three walks and hit a batter in the game, but worked out of the situation each time. Chester Pak walked and reached second in the second inning and AB Blanchet reached second in the fifth, but fine pitching by Garza helped him through the danger.
The Titans opened the scoring in the bottom of the fourth inning when J.D. Davis hit a solo home run to right center field. In the bottom of the fifth, Davis hit a two-run homer to left field that scored Austin Diemer and put the final scoreline at 3-0.
Keel and reliever Calvin Copping combined to strike out 10 Fullerton batters in the game, as Copping pitched the final two innings of scoreless relief. The four hits allowed were the second-fewest by the Matadors in a game this season.
Keel was hit with the loss for the Matadors despite his otherwise masterful effort on the mound. The junior finishes the 2014 season with a team high 72 strikeouts.
The Matadors and Titans will finish their three-game series and close out the season on Saturday, May 24th. First pitch from Goodwin Field is scheduled for 1 p.m.