March 29, 2010
NORTHRIDGE, Calif. - Justin DeMarco went 3-for-4 with two home runs to lead the Matador offense, as Cal State Northridge (16-7) defeated the University at Albany 10-2 Monday afternoon at Matador field.
DeMarco's two-home run performance makes him the fourth Matador to accomplish such a feat this season. Dominic D'Anna went yard twice against LMU on March 14th, Brad Decater also hit two long balls against LMU, and had another pair versus UNLV two days later, while Ryan Pineda hit two against Seattle on March 21st,
The score would stay tied at one until the bottom of the third, when CSUN took the lead for good.
After a Muren walk to lead-off the inning, Pineda hit his team-leading ninth home run of the season deep down the left field line to give Northridge its first lead of the game, 3-1.
D'Anna followed Pineda's home run with a single up the middle, eventually advancing to second on a DeMarco grounder to third base.
That advancement to second base would prove costly for Albany, as Marty Bowen's double to left center shortly thereafter would bring D'Anna in to score and put CSUN up 4-1.
A Mike Tirri homer for Albany in the top of the fourth would cut into the Matador lead by one, but it would not take long for CSUN to get that run back.
In the bottom of the fifth, DeMarco got his first homer of the game when he drove a 1-1 pitch over the left-center field fence, a solo shot that put the Northridge advantage back at three.
However, the sixth would prove to be the inning in which the Matadors did the most damage, scoring five quick runs on just three hits.
Pineda got things started when he lined Albany relief pitcher Terry McFadden's first pitch of the afternoon into centerfield, scoring Ridge Carpenter from second, increasing the Matador lead to 6-2.
The next hitter, D'Anna, ripped a double to right-center, scoring Muren from second - who drew a walk earlier in the inning - and Pineda all the way from first.
Then, with D'Anna standing on second base, DeMarco blasted his second home run of the game, again to left-center, giving CSUN its fifth run of the inning, making the score 10-2 Matadors.
The Great Danes briefly threatened to cut into the Matador lead in the top of the eighth, as CSUN suddenly found itself with runners on first and second with no outs and the heart of the Albany lineup due to bat.
It was at this point, however, that Matador reliever Bryan Longpre came in to pitch for Northridge and almost singlehandedly got the Matadors out of the jam.
Shortly after taking the mount, Longpre earned his first pick-off of the season, catching the Great Danes' lead-runner, Brian Bullard, leaning too far towards third base.
Longpre then got Tirri to ground into a fielder's choice before striking out pinch-hitter Ralph Rizzo on three pitches, ending the Albany scoring threat and preserving the Matadors' eight-run cushion.
Northridge returns to action this Thursday when they kick-off Big West play in the first of a three-game homestand against #24 UC Irvine at Matador Field. First pitch is slated or 3:00 p.m.
Albany 100 100 000 - 2 9 0
Matadors 103 015 00x - 10 11 1
Win - Muren (2-0) Loss - White (0-3) Save - None
T - 2:29 A - 120