March 6, 2011
BEAUMONT, Texas -
Centerfielder Nate Ring hit a solo homerun in the top of the first inning and freshman outfielder Miles Williams went 2-for-3 with two RBI in his first career start as the Cal State Northridge Matadors (7-5) defeated the Lamar University Cardinals (8-6) by a final score of 7-6 at the YMBL Cardinal Classic.
With the win, the Matadors finished the four-game invitational with a 2-2 record, losing to New Mexico State and Lamar before earning one-run victories over San Francisco and Lamar.
Ring was the second hitter of the game for Northridge, and he hit a 3-2 pitch over the right field fence for his first homerun of the season to give the Matadors a 1-0 advantage in the top half of the first. Cal State Northridge held the slim margin until the bottom of the third, when Lamar took the lead for the first time by scoring four runs in the inning.
Facing a three-run deficit in the top of the fifth inning, the Matadors began stringing at-bats together and moving runners on the basepaths, something that they were unable to do in their two losses at the Classic.
Senior Ridge Carpenter led off the inning with a walk and advanced to second on Ring's second hit of the game, a single to right field. Carpenter scored as the next hitter, Steven Keller, hit a single to left to cut the lead to two runs at 4-2.
Ring and Keller each moved up a base on a wild pitch, and the bases were loaded when Joshua Goossen-Brown walked after he pinch hit for Christian Allen. Williams followed with a walk to force in the runner from third, and third baseman Tommy Simis brought home the tying run on a fielder's choice.
In all, the Matadors scored four runs in the fifth inning to regain the lead after TS Reed walked with the bases loaded.
The lead did not hold for long, as the Cardinals tied the score in their half of the sixth inning.Left-handed pitcher Jacob Petersen (1-0) entered the game with two-outs in the inning and ended up throwing one inning en route to his first victory of the season.
The Matadors overtook Lamar again, this time in the seventh inning, as the back-and-forth battle continued in the late stages of the game.
Northridge loaded the bases before the first out was recorded and Reed hit a ball that landed in right field, but Williams was thrown out at home plate as he held up at third, anticipating a catch by the outfielder. The next hitter Carpenter grounded out to the right side of the infield to score the go-ahead run.
The run would prove to be the game-winner, as Northridge added an insurance run that they would need in the top of the eighth to go up 7-5 before Lamar scored in the bottom of the eighth.
Justen Gorski set down the Cardinals in order in the ninth to record his first save of the season.
Keller went 3-for-4 from the plate with two runs and one RBI to extend his team-high hit streak to nine games. Catcher Marty Bowen went 0-for-4 to see his hit streak ended at seven games.
The Matadors will return to action this Tuesday, March 8 at Matador Field as they host the San Diego State Aztecs for one game. First pitch is scheduled for 2 p.m.