Matadors Defeat Valparaiso, 6-3, to Earn First Series Win of 2011
Feb. 28, 2011
NORTHRIDGE, Calif. -
The Cal State Northridge Matadors (5-3) struck for six runs on 11 hits to defeat the Valparaiso Crusaders (1-6) on Monday and take the weekend series three games to one.
The Matadors jumped out to an early lead, scoring two runs in the first inning for the second time this series. Senior Ridge Carpenter walked to lead off the home half of the first, and centerfielder Andrew Muren was hit by a pitch. Following a double steal, sophomore Marty Bowen singled down the right field line to bring in both runs.
The Northridge lead was increased to three in the bottom of the third inning. Muren led off the inning with a double to center field and advanced to third on Steven Keller's infield single. Bowen drove in his third run of the game with a single to left field.
Bowen finished the day a perfect 4-for-4 at the plate with three RBI.
Carlos Gonzalez, Jr. made his second official start of the series, with the first one shortened in the rained-out game on Friday. Gonzalez threw 4.0 innings and did not allow a run, striking out five hitters.
The Crusaders came storming back in the top half of the seventh, plating three runs to tie the score. With two outs, Valparaiso was able to load the bases on a walk and two singles. Centerfielder Chris Manning then doubled home three runs before the Matadors could get the final out.
The tie score did not last long, as Bowen led off with his fourth hit of the game. He was lifted in favor of pinch runner Alex Muren, who moved up to second on a sacrifice bunt from Christian Allen. That was all the running that Alex Muren had to do in the inning, as freshman Miles Williams smacked his first collegiate hit, a two-out two-run homerun to left field to break the tie and give the Matadors the lead for good.
Northridge added an insurance run in the bottom of the eighth for relief pitcher Justen Gorski (2-0), who pitched 2.1 innings to record his second win of the season.
The Matadors are back in action this weekend when they travel to Beaumont, Texas to compete in the YMBL Cardinal Classic on the campus of Lamar University. Northridge will face New Mexico State on Thursday, Lamar on Friday and Sunday, and San Francisco on Saturday.