May 24, 2006
Los Angeles, Calif. - Danny Dorn's two-out, RBI-single to center in the top of the eleventh inning lifted No. 2 Cal State Fullerton to a 6-3 non-conference victory over USC Tuesday night at Dedeaux Field.
Fullerton, for the 22nd time in 32 years at the Division I level, posted 40 wins to improve its overall season record to 40-13 in winning its second extra-inning affair in five attempts. USC falls to 25-30 with both teams heading into their final regular-season series this weekend.
USC's big gun Ian Kennedy was handed a 3-2 lead in the top of the ninth inning needing three outs for his first save of 2006, but Titan first baseman Brett Pill put a stop to that with an RBI-triple to tie the game at 3-3.
After pinch-hitter Matt Fahey popped out to right, second baseman Justin Turner extended his hitting streak to 12 games with a one-out single to keep the Titan hopes alive. Kennedy then got Titan shortstop Blake Davis to sky to center to get within one out of the save. The next hitter Pill then split the right-centerfield gap with a line drive to score Turner all the way from first base, forcing the midweek game to extra frames.
Winning pitcher Ryan Paul (2-1) allowed a leadoff single to Darin Vieria in the bottom of the ninth, but got a pair of ground outs, including one of three Titan inning-ending double plays, to erase the Trojan threat.
In the eleventh, Jared Clark led off the inning by getting hit by a John Dunn fastball before being sacrificed to second by Turner. Blake Davis, getting an extra chance to extend his season-high 21-game hitting streak, was also hit by Dunn giving Fullerton runners at first and second with one out. Pill, the hero the inning before, then flied to left to set up Dorn's big hit. USC brought on Brandon Buxbaum to face Dorn, who worked the count to 3-2 before his RBI-single to center. Freshman David Cooper tacked on some insurance runs with a single up the middle that brought home another two Titan runs to put the game out of reach for the Trojans.
Davis' hitting streak ends at 21 games. The junior has gone hitless in just six of the Titans 53 games this season.
USC would score first on a suicide squeeze bunt laid down by Daniel Perales in the first off Titan starter Dave Pherrin who went three innings on the pre-determined "staff day".
Brandon Tripp would even the game at 1-1 with an RBI single to center in the third.
Fullerton would take a brief 2-1 lead in the top of the fifth on a scoring fly ball by Cooper, his first of three RBI on the night, before USC would retaliate with a pair of runs in the bottom half of the frame.
The Trojans would plate two runs off reliever Bryan Harris in the bottom of the fifth, as Perales tripled home Hector Estrella, then later scored on a pinch-hit single by Lucas Duda to give the Trojans a 3-2 advantage.
Pill would lead all players with three hits, missing hitting for the cycle by a home run.
Paul tied a season-high by going 2 innings in relief before surrendering the ball to Cory Arbiso who notched his second save of the season with a scoreless eleventh.
The hard-luck pitcher of the night was USC starter Shawn Olsen who went eight innings against the No. 2 team in the country, allowing six hits and an earned run, handing the ball off to Kennedy with the 3-2 lead.
Fullerton holds a three-game lead with three to play against arch-rival Long Beach state at Blair Field this weekend. Friday night's game will be televised on CSTV live as it happens as Wes Roemer looks for his 11th win of the season. First pitch is slated for 6:30 p.m.