March 31, 2007
Northridge, Calif. - Behind a perfect 5-for-5, 5-RBI afternoon by second baseman Corey Jones, No. 13 Cal State Fullerton beat Cal State Northridge 9-4 in a Big West Conference baseball game at Matador Field Saturday afternoon.
The Titans (17-10), scored their runs in bunches, plating multiple runs in the third, fifth and ninth innings to run their winning streak against the struggling Matadors (12-18) to 13 consecutive games.
Jeff Kaplan (4-2) earned his fourth victory of the year with a 7 2/3 inning performance that saw him strike out five Matadors. He retired the side in four of the innings he worked and retired 15 out of 16 between the first and the sixth.
A Jorge Andrade, Jr. RBI-double gave CSUN a 1-0 lead in the first inning for the second day in a row, but Fullerton forged back in the top half of the third inning with a four-run effort.
Fullerton forged ahead in their half of the third inning, taking full advantage of three walks by Northridge starter Joe Rocchio (1-4). With the bases loaded, Josh Fellhauer collected his fourth hit of the weekend, a triple down the right field line to clear the bases, giving the Titans a 3-1 edge. Corey Jones added one more run a batter later, singling to left off the Matador righty, to drive home Jones with the Titans fourth run of the frame.
In the top of the fifth, two fielding miscues and a hit batter by Rocchio, loaded the bases for Titan second baseman Corey Jones who promptly cleared them with a double down the right field line. It was Jones' third hit and second, third, and fourth RBIs of the day and gave the Titans a 7-1 advantage.
In the sixth, Andrade, Jr. again gave Kaplan trouble as he sent a shot that skipped past Chris Jones in right Field for a triple driving home C.J. Belenger who singled a batter earlier. A sacrifice fly by Jowen-James Murray-Thornton then cut the Titan lead to 7-3. The Matadors added another run in the bottom of the eighth, but that would be all as reigning Big West Pitcher of the Week Justin Klipp earned his first-career save with 1 2/3 innings of scoreless relief upping his scoreless streak to 8 2/3 innings.
Fullerton tacked on another pair of runs in the top of the ninth. Back-to-back doubles by John Curtis and Ch. Jones got the Titans one, then Co. Jones' fifth hit of the day drove home his fifth RBI to give the Titans the 9-4 final.
The win handed Cal State Fullerton its seventh series win in eight tries so far in 2007, and handed Cal State Northridge its tenth loss in its last 11 games.
The third and final game of series will be at 1 p.m. on Sunday afternoon at Matador Field. Sean Urena (3-2, 3.91 ERA) will toe the rubber for the Titans, while the Matadors will counter with right-hander Edwin Quirarte (2-3, 4.01 ERA)