April 22, 2012
Fullerton, Calif. - Carlos Lopez doubled to the wall to score Ivory Thomas in the bottom of the tenth inning to give 12th-ranked Cal State Fullerton a huge 5-4 Big West Conference series win over visiting Cal Poly Sunday afternoon.
The Titans, now 2-1 in extra inning games, win their fifth in the last six games and improve to 26-13 overall and 9-3 in league play to keep a hold on a tie for first place with Long Beach State in the conference race. Cal Poly drops its fourth game in its last five contest to drop to 22-16, 6-6, three games back of the Titans and 49ers in fourth place.
Michael Lorenzen (2-0), who was just a strike away from save No. 13, wound up with the win as Cal Poly scored twice off the fire baller to take a 4-3 lead in the top of the ninth. David Armendariz led off the ninth with a double that he punched just inside the first base bag and then scored with two out on a Chris Hoo single to center. After a walk, Mike Miller then put the Mustangs in the lead at 4-3 with a base hit just by a diving Derek Legg at second base. Coming into the game, Lorenzen had 12 consecutive saves in his first season as a centerfielder/closer.
Nick Grim (2-2) gave up a run in the bottom of the ninth and then again in the tenth to take the loss. Anthony Hutting singled to center in the bottom of the ninth and moved to second when Austin Kingsolver laid down a perfect bunt single. After a fielder's choice grounder left runners at the corners, Jared Deacon came through to tie the game at 4-4 with a base hit to center.
Grim surrendered his team's only walk of the weekend to the leadoff hitter Thomas in the bottom of the 10th and then Lopez shot a ball to the left field gap that Alex Michaels was unable to cut off. The ball got to the wall allowing Thomas to score all the way from first on the walk-off hit. Sunday's walk-off win was the second of the year for Fullerton. They also won one in dramatic fashion on Apr. 6 vs. UC Davis.
It looked like Grahamm Wiest was going to get his fourth win of the year for Fullerton after allowing just two runs on eight hits over eight strong innings. He struck out three and walked just one. The Titans scored lone runs in the first (Lopez RBI single), fourth (Matt Chapman RBI double) and sixth (Hutting sacrifice fly) innings and held a 3-2 lead going into the ninth with the nation's No. 2 saves guy headed to the mound for the ninth.
Wiest was touched for single runs in the fourth and fifth. Mitch Haniger drove in the Mustangs first run with a single to left in the fourth. Denver Chavez singled home a run in the fifth. In all, Cal Poly finished the afternoon with 12 hits, with four of those going for doubles and three of them to kick off innings.
Cal Poly Kyle Brueggemann lasted just 3.1 and gave up the Titans' first two runs on four hits befor handing off to Matt Imhof. Imhof worked the middle 4.1 innings and gave up just one run - Hutting's go-ahead sac-fly - and allowed just one hit.
Lopez had a big day for the Titans, going 3-for-5 with two doubles and a pair of RBI. Mike Miller led the way for the Mustangs on Sunday with three hits. Jimmy Allen, Aremdariz and Chaves all had two for Cal Poly which hit .322 in the series.
The Titans made the most of their hits, hitting just .260 for the series, but winning their ninth consecutive weekend series dating back to opening weekend at Florida.
The Titans will return to the field on Tuesday when they head to Westchester to take on LMU in their only game of the week. First pitch will be at 3 p.m.