Feb. 17, 2012
SAN DIEGO - Freshman Erik Forgione capped a four-run, eighth-inning rally with a two-run single in his first college at bat as the Washington baseball team came back from a 3-1 deficit to beat San Diego State, 7-4, Friday night at Tony Gwynn Stadium. The game was both teams' season opener.
Another UW freshman, first baseman Branden Berry, the San Diego area player of the year last season at Rancho Bernardo High, opened his UW career in his hometown by going 4-for-4, singling in his first four college at bats.
Trailing 3-1, Washington (1-0) rallied in the top of the eighth. Joe Meggs walked and both Ryan Wiggins and Berry singled to load the bases with no outs. SDSU freshman reliever Mike RoBards then hit Husky junior Jacob Lamb with a pitch, forcing in a run to cut it to 3-2. With Mike Hachadorian on in place of RoBards, a wild pitch allowed pinch runner Matt Jackson to come home, tying the score.
Hachadorian retired the next two batters and stood a good chance of getting out of the jam despite reloading the bases with a two-out walk. However, Forgione, who'd entered the game defensively in the seventh, came through with a single to shallow left, driving in a pair of runs to give the Huskies their first lead of the night.
SDSU (0-1) threatened a comeback of its own in the bottom of the eighth. Brad Haynal and Ryann Muno opened the inning with singles and, after a sacrifice bunt, a flyout to left from freshman Spencer Thornton drove in Haynal to cut the lead to 5-4. However, reliever Joshua Fredendall came on and got a groundout to end the eighth with the Husky lead in tact.
The UW added two more runs in the ninth when Jayce Ray scored from third on an errant throw during a rundown after a missed squeeze bunt attempt. Freshman Andrew Ely then drove in classmate Jackson, who'd singled in his first college at bat, to make it 7-4.
UW reliever Mac Acker (1-0) picked up the win. He retired the only batter he faced in the game, getting the final out of the seventh. RoBards (0-1) suffered the loss, as all four runs in the eighth were charged to him. Fredendall, a junior college transfer from Foster City, Calif., went on to work the ninth to pick up his first Husky save.
While both teams put their leadoff batter aboard in each of the first two innings, neither was able to push a run across until the Aztecs broke through in the fourth inning. Catcher Haynal led off with a double and, after a single from Muno moved him to third, a Steven Pallares sacrifice fly drove him in to give SDSU a 1-0 lead. Muno later scored on a two-out single from Greg Allen to stake the home team to a 2-0 advantage.
The Huskies wasted no time in answering. In the top of the fifth, freshman second baseman Robert Pehl walked to lead off the inning. After an out, UW catcher and San Diego-area native B.K. Santy belted a triple to deepest center field, scoring Pehl to cut the Aztecs' lead to 2-1.
San Diego State added a third run in the seventh inning when Allen singled, moved to second on a bunt and scored on a single from Cody Smith, increasing the lead to 3-1.
Both starting pitchers turned in solid performances, but neither figured in the decision. UW junior Aaron West left the game in the top of the sixth after allowing a leadoff single and finished having given up two runs (one earned) on seven hits with four strikeouts and no walks in his five-plus innings. SDSU starter Cole Swanson pitched six innings, allowing one run on five hits and a walk while striking out four.
Washington had five different newcomers record their first career hits while Jackson, Forgione and Berry, all true freshmen, singled in their first college at bats.
Ray, a JC transfer from Sonoma, Calif., was the only Husky other than Berry with multiple hits, going 2-for-5 with a double. SDSU got three hits each from Haynal and Muno.
The Huskies and Aztecs return to the field for a 6:00 p.m. game Saturday and wrap up the series Sunday with a 1:00 p.m. game. Washington opens the home schedule Tuesday at 5:00 p.m. vs. SeattleU at Husky Ballpark.
|Box Wrap- February 17, 2012|
|Washington 7, San Diego State 4|