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April 5, 2012

PLAY BALL: Cal State Fullerton (18-10, 2-1), winners of four of its last five, return home after a 7-1 win over San Diego State on Tuesday to take on UC Davis (11-13, 0-0) in a three-game Big West Conference series at Goodwin Field, Thursday through Saturday.

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Koby Gauna pitched five solid innings against the Aztecs and Richy Pedroza continued his hot hitting with a three-knock, two-RBI night as Fullerton took advantage of five Aztec errors to sweep the season series.

Gauna allowed just two hits and an unearned run over five innings before the bullpen took over to throw another four scoreless frames.

Last week, Fullerton went 3-2, splitting a non-conference series at Arizona State before winning 2 of 3 in the Big West Conference opening series with Cal State Northridge.

The Titans got shut out by four Sun Devil pitchers on Tuesday in a 1-0 loss. Coming on the heels of Saturday's 3-0 loss to Oral Roberts, it was only the third time (1982 and 1997) in the program's Div. I history dating to 1975 that the Titans had been blanked two games in a row. Koby Gauna took a tough loss.

The scoreless streak was snapped at 19 innings in the first stanza on Wednesday when Michael Lorenzen singled home Richy Pedroza. The Titans would go on to amass 18 hits -- all singles -- and post a 9-5 victory. Tyler Peitzmeier got the win in his first collegiate start with excellent relief from Willie Kuhl. Lorenzen got his ninth save.

Dylan Floro escaped a first-inning jam and then sailed to the Titans' first complete-game win of the year on Friday, a 7-2 victory over the Matadors, who didn't score until the ninth. The offense produced 12 more singles -- three each by Pedroza, Carlos Lopez and Chad Wallach.

Reliever Dimitri de la Fuente with help from Lorenzen got the win Saturday, 8-6. The Nos. 2-3-4 hitters had big nights with Anthony Trajano getting 4 hits including a double, Lorenzen adding 3 hits and Lopez driving home 3 runs.

Fullerton failed for the third time in as many home series to pull off the sweep, losing 5-1 on Sunday. Each team manufactured 9 hits but the Matadors managed a 4-run third inning capped by Miles Williams' 2-run homer off loser Grahamm Wiest.

THIS WEEKEND IN TITAN BASEBALL:
Apr. 5 vs. UC Davis (Goodwin Field), 6 p.m.
CSF - RHP Dylan Floro (4-2, 2.25 ERA)
UCD - LHP Dayne Quist (4-0, 1.99 ERA)

Apr. 6 vs. UC Davis (Goodwin Field), 7 p.m.
CSF - LHP Kenny Mathews (3-0, 2.89 ERA)
UCD -LHP Anthony Kupbens (2-3, 2.98 ERA)

Apr. 7 vs. UC Davis (Goodwin Field), 1 p.m.
CSF - RHP Grahamm Wiest (1-3, 3.86 ERA)
UCD - RHP Tom Briner (2-2, 3.43 ERA)

FOLLOW THE GAMES: All three games this weekend will have free audio broadcasts provided live as the action happens at fullertontitans.com. To hear the games presented with our audio partner Stretch Internet, go to our website and click the headphones in the upper right hand corner of your browser - that applies from your computer or your iPhone and Android smart phones. There will also be video streams on Thursday and Saturday by the subscription-based BigWest.TV. There will also be GameTracker coverage for each game. Just click the GT mark in the rotating scoreboard on the home page of fullertontitans.com, or find the link on the baseball schedule page, and track most all of college baseball in just a few clicks of the mouse.

VERSUS UC DAVIS: The Titans have an all-time record of 19-2 against the Aggies going back to their first meeting in 2005. Both losses came at Goodwin Field (2006 and 2008), where they are 7-2 against Davis. On the road, Fullerton is a perfect 12-0. Davis joined the Big West in 2008, and since, Fullerton has compiled an 11-1 conference record against it. The Titans have won each of the last 10 games including last year's 14-0, 7-0, 4-2 sweep up North.

TITANS' TOP HITTING PERFORMANCE OF LAST WEEK:
Carlos Lopez led the Titans to a win over ranked Arizona State and a series victory over Cal State Northirdge last week by hitting a solid .450 (9-for-20) with a team-leading 5 RBI from the clean-up spot. Through Saturday's win over the Matadors, Lopez continued an 11-game hitting streak with his fourth multiple-hit game in a row. His first inning, two-run single drove home the eventual game-winning run in Saturday's ballgame that saw the Titans win their sixth straight weekend series. Lopez also played perfect defense at first base in 53 opportunities. His 11-game streak was snapped on Sunday with an 0-for-4 day at the plate.

TITANS TOP PITCHING PERFORMANCE OF LAST WEEK:
Dylan Floro pitched the Titans' first complete game of the year last Friday, using just 116 pitches to improve to 4-2 on the year. He surrendered seven hits and struck out a career high nine Matadors without issuing a walk. He had a five-hit shutout working into the ninth when a couple of hits and a couple of Titan errors led to Northridge's two runs. Floro retired 16 of 17 batters from the first through the sixth innings including 10 in a row from the third to the sixth.

TITAN TIDBITS: &\#149; In the last 10 games the Titans have accumulated 101 hits with just 10 of them going for extra base hits. In five games last week, the Titans had 60 hits including an 18-hit effort last Wednesday night vs. then No. 14 Arizona State. In those five games, the Titans produced just three extra-base hits (all doubles) and had 42 straight singles from mid-Tuesday (vs. ASU) to mid-Saturday (vs. CSUN).

&\#149;Anthony Trajano is leading the way in the batting average column, hitting .419 (13-for-31) over the last 10 games. During that span, Trajano has a nine-game hitting streak and has scored six runs and driven in two. He is also leading the team in sacrifice hits (4).

&\#149; An RBI-single on Tuesday at San Diego State extended Michael Lorenzen's team-leading hitting streak to 10 games. During the streak, Lorenzen is hitting .381 (16-for-42) with a tie for the team lead in RBI with 6.

&\#149; Since moving to the leadoff spot for the Arizona State midweek series, Richy Pedroza has been doing his job at getting on base. in six games, Pedroza has reached base safely 16 times in 28 plate appearances (.571) and has gone 12-for-24 (.500) in his official at bats.

&\#149;The Titans are hitting .301 over the last ten games and .345 over the last five and have upped their overall team batting average to .278. Thee weeks ago, the Titans were hitting a collective .259.

&\#149; The Titans are averaging 9.14 hits and 4.68 runs per game in 2012. The opponents are averaging 8.64 hits and 3.71 runs against them.

&\#149; The Titans are doing a good job of setting the table each inning. Leadoff hitters of each inning are getting on base 38.3 percent of the time (93 have reached in 243 opportunities)... the problem has been scoring them... Fullerton is hitting just .252 with runners in scoring position, and .268 with two outs.

&\#149;Mr. Clutch so far has been Richy Pedroza who leads the team (by six RBI) with 11, two-out RBI.

&\#149;Fullerton's pitching staff has the sixth best strikeout-to-walk ratio in the nation. The Titans are striking out 3.37 batters out to every walk surrendered. Ole Miss leads the nation with a 4.49:1 ratio. Dylan Floro leads the Titans and ranks 19th in the nation with an 8.75:1 mark.

&\#149; Fullerton was shutout back-to-back times (3-0, Mar. 24 vs Oral Roberts and 1-0, Mar. 27 vs. Arizona State) for the first time since March of 1997. It was just the third time in the history of the program (also in 1982 at the College World Series) that the Titans were blanked in consecutive games.

&\#149; Fullerton will start 2012 with seven of its former players on 2012 MLB Opening Day rosters - Ricky Romero (TOR), Kurt Suzuki (OAK), Vinnie Pestano (CLE), Justin Turner (NYM), Reed Johnson (CHC), Brett Pill (SFG) and Erik Komatsu (STL). Mark Kotsay, with the San Diego Padres, will start the year on the 15-day DL with a calf strain. He will be the eighth former Titan in the big leagues this year upon his return. Komatsu is making his major league debut with the Cardinals, and when he plays in his first game, will become the Titans' 52 big leaguer. Komatsu, Pill and Turner will be making their first Opening Day rosters with their respective teams.