April 9, 2011
Fullerton, Calif. - - Noe Ramirez tossed 7.2 innings of 1-run ball and Nick Ramirez drove in a run at the plate and saved it on the mound as No. 12 Cal State Fullerton narrowly defeated UC Irvine 2-1 in Big West Conference baseball action Saturday night at Goodwin Field.
With the win, the Titans even the three-game series at one-game apiece and improve to 21-9 overall and 4-1 in league play. The loss for Irvine snaps its six game winning streak and drops it to 20-7, 4-1.
The rubber game of the three-game series will begin at 2 p.m. on Sunday and will be nationally televised by ESPNU.
A throwing error by Irvine second baseman Tommy Reyes in the fifth proved to be the difference in the game as Jared Deacon came around to score when the ball got by first baseman Jordan Leyland on an attempt at a 6-4-3 double play. Deacon was the last batter losing pitcher Andrew Thurmond (1-3) faced. The Titan catcher went to second on a wild pitch by reliever Kyle Hooper and scored on the botched throw.
Noe Ramirez (5-2) was effective on the mound holding the Irvine offense to seven hits over 7.2 innings for the win. The right-hander struck out nine and walked just one and faced just one over the minimum over his last 4.2 innings. Dylan Floro came in to get the only batter he faced with a runner on in relief of Ramirez in the eighth and then Nick Ramirez nailed it down in the ninth by getting three consecutive outs after allowing a soft leadoff single to Drew Hillman. More than half of Ramirez's saves in the past two seasons have come on the tail end of a Noe Ramirez win (9-of-17). The lefty now has 25 career saves.
Long before his warm up tosses began, Nick Ramirez put the Titans one the board in the bottom of the first with a run-scoring fly ball to right that drove home Ivory Thomas from third to give the Titans a brief 1-0 lead. Thomas had singled to lead things off and went to third on Anthony Trajano's hit-and-run chopper to left.
Irvine got the run back in the top of the second with a single by Hillman, a groundout and an RBI single to center from Christian Ramirez.
Chad Wallach's pinch-hit single in the bottom of the eighth gave the Titans their fourth and final hit of the night. Irvine finished with eight.