March 6, 2009
Hattiesburg, Mississippi - No. 7 Cal State Fullerton (7-2) exploded for a season-high 22 hits and belted four home runs as it upended Southern Miss (8-2) in a runaway 15-2 game in the first match-up of a three-game set at "The Pete."
The Titans extend their current winning streak to six games, and have beaten the Golden Eagles all four times they have met.
Daniel Renken (2-0) was somewhat lost in the offensive outburst, but the sophomore hurler tossed five near perfect innings, allowing just one hit to a team that entered the game with a .361 team batting average. The current Big West Pitcher of the Week didn't allow a runner on until Taylor Walker reached to lead off the fourth. And he would not allow another the rest of his time in the game.
The Titans took a 1-0 lead in the first inning but busted the game open with an eight-run second and a five run third to take the home crowd of 4,011 out of the game. Josh Fellhauer's first home run of the season knocked losing pitcher Todd McInnis (2-1) out of the game after just 1.1 innings of work. Nick Ramirez and Dustin Garneau doubled in runs, and Joe Scott added a three-run triple in the inning that saw 12 Titans come to the plate.
As bad as it was for the starter McInnis (1.1 IP, 5 ER, 8 H), it got worse for reliever Moses Munoz who was touched up for nine earned runs on eight hits over an 1.2 innings of work. He was on the hill for four of the second run innings and all five of the third inning, all five courtesy of three Titan home runs.
Fellhauer singled with one out in the third to get things going when Jared Clark unleashed a two-run monster blast to left to up the score to 11-0. Nick Ramirez followed with a solo shot to left, the first-back-to-back home runs of the year for Cal State Fullerton. Following an out by Khris Davis, Jeff Newman singled to center allowing Dustin Garneau to come up and hit the third moon-shot of the inning to give the Titans a 14-0 advantage after two and a half.
Fullerton added one final run, an unearned one off of Seth Hester in the sixth, to complete their scoring.
With the game firmly in grasp for the Titans, Head Coach Dave Serrano went to the bullpen in the bottom of the sixth and handed the ball to Travis Kelly. The junior right-hander had a 1-2-3 sixth, but then struggled a little with control and a 14-run lead in the seventh. Kelly walked the leadoff hitter Kemeron Brunty, who after a wild pitch and a fly ball, scored the Eagles first run on an infield single by Cory Stevens.
Southern Miss had their biggest outburst of the night, collecting three hits off reliever Ryan Ackland in the eighth. Brian Dozier extended his hitting streak to 10-games with sharp single to center bringing home back-up catcher Kyle Maxie with the Eagles' final run.
The two teams will square off on Saturday afternoon at 3:00 p.m. local time, with Kyle Witten on the Mound for Fullerton.