Matadors Outlast Pepperdine in 11 Innings, 9-8

April 21, 2009

Box Score

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. - With the bases loaded in the bottom of the eleventh inning, Cal State Northridge (17-22) second baseman Tommy Simis drove in the tying and game-winning runs with his single to centerfield to propel the Matadors to a 9-8 victory over the Pepperdine Waves Tuesday afternoon at Matador Field.

With the victory, the Matadors split the season series with the Waves as each team won their two games played at their respective fields, with Pepperdine still looking for their first win at Northridge since March 7, 2000.

Having pitched the final 3.2 innings of the game, Brian Slover recorded his second win of the season.

Northridge started the day's scoring spree in the second inning When Ryan Pineda reached home on a single by Jason Dabbs that screamed through the left side of the infield to drive in the first of three runs from the bat of the Matador second baseman in the game.

CSUN would extend their lead with a two-run performance in the bottom of the fourth inning when Dabbs took to the plate with Matadors on each corner of the infield.

His single to right field would score Pineda once again, shortly followed by a sacrifice bunt laid by Simis to stretch the Matador lead to 3-0.

Pepperdine would respond in their half of the sixth when they ripped the lead away from CSUN with five runs of their own on three hits and two Matador errors; an inning that was capped-off by a two-run home run hit by Wave first baseman Ryan Heroy.

Of the four home runs hit by Heroy this season, half have taken place at Matador Field.

Down 5-3, the Matadors would chip away at the newly-created Pepperdine advantage when Dabbs drove in Pineda, who originally lead-off the inning with a double down the left field line, for the third time in the game to decrease the Pepperdine lead to one run.

The run scored by CSUN in the sixth would soon disappear as Pepperdine responded the very next inning with another run of their own to stretch their lead back to two runs.

Down by two runs, with only six at-bats remaining in the game, Northridge started their first come-from-behind effort to regain the lead with their set of at-bats in the eighth inning.

Dabbs led off that scoring opportunity with a double down the left field line, his fourth double hit this season, before scoring on a Simis single to right-centerfield.

Simis would later take second base on a wild pitch thrown by the Waves before Jason Pruitt joined him on base after inducing a walk.

Simis would then score on a single down the right field line from the bat of Richard Cates, with Pruitt soon joining him in the dugout after scoring himself thanks to a single down the left field line from the bat of Chris Hannick.

With momentum clearly on their side, many in the crowd thought they had just witnessed the collective effort needed for Northridge to secure the victory. However, Pepperdine would refuse to roll over and just hand the win over to CSUN, as they scored the tying run of the game in their final set of at-bats to force extra innings.

After evening the game at 7-7 with their run in the ninth, Pepperdine would take over the lead once again when they scored one run in the eleventh to force Northridge into a pressure-packed situation.

With only three outs at their disposal, CSUN needed to score a run to continue playing, or face the risk of losing three out of four games to their neighbors from the coast.

Pineda led off the eleventh with a single through the left side of the infield, followed by a single hit by John Parham, this time through the opposite side of the diamond.

With runners on first and second, C.J. Belanger came through with a clutch sacrifice bunt to advance both the runners, and place the tying run only 90 feet away.

Having learned their lesson during his first five at-bats, Pepperdine then intentionally walked Dabbs to load the bases for Simis.

With the count at 1-1, Simis ensured that no Matador would have to face another pitch thrown by a Wave for the rest of the season as he hit a sharp line-drive that split the Pepperdine shortstop and second baseman into centerfield to score Pineda, who was originally at third base, and Parham who hustled his way around the latter half of the diamond for the winning run.

The Matadors will now have two days off to rest, recuperate, and plan for their next set of games against the UC Riverside Highlanders. The first of three games between the two will take place at Matador Field this Friday, with first pitch scheduled for 3:00 p.m.

Also taking place during this series is Spirit Saturday as free hot dogs will be given out to all CSUN students dressed in university apparel for Saturday's game between the Matadors and the Highlanders. 

Pepperdine 000 005 101 01 - 8 9 2

Matadors    010 201 030 02 - 9 16 8

Win - Slover (2-3) Loss - Gaudi (3-2)

T - 4:05 A - 107



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