College baseball: Cal State Fullerton takes down Stanford in opener
FULLERTON, Calif. --- Junior Connor Seabold capped off what was certainly an opening day to remember, as he tossed 7.0 innings of shutout baseball, willing the 16th-ranked Titans to a 1-0 victory over No. 18 Stanford on Thursday night at Goodwin Field.
Seabold (1-0) scattered five hits and struck out five, while allowing just one free pass on the night. It was then sophomore hurler Colton Eastman who came in to complete the masterful pitching performance, as he struck out five of seven batters he faced in 2.0 innings of work to earn the first save of his career.
No Titan had more than one hit in the ballgame, but sophomore Hank LoForte and junior Dillion Persinger put together a two-out rally in the 6th inning to not only score the only run of the game, but break up what was a no-hit bid. LoForte doubled down the left field line to set up Persinger to collect the lone RBI of the game, as he busted one through to left center to put the Titans up 1-0.
Junior Scott Hurst was the only other Titan to collect a knock on the evening, while junior Taylor Bryant was also able to contribute offensively with a pair of walks.
Kris Bubic (0-1) took the loss for Stanford, as he tossed 6.0 innings, surrendered two hits and struck out 10. Cardinal third baseman Mikey Diekroeger was the lone player to record a multi-hit game, going 2-of-3 at the dish.
Stanford had a few opportunities in the game, leaving runners on first and second in both the 2nd and 5th frames, but were never able to advance a runner past second base in the contest.
"Couldn't have asked for a better start to our season." - Dillon Persinger pic.twitter.com/tT7bnt97XT— Titan Baseball (@BaseballTitans) February 17, 2017
For Fullerton (1-0), the win marks its third straight victory in a home opener, while it improves to 20-8 all-time when opening the season at home. Eight of the last 11 games between the Titans and Cardinal have been decided by two runs or less, while six of those contests have been one-run affairs.
The game capped off what was an emotionally charged opening day, as the Titans were forced to move up their home opener from Friday to Thursday in order to avoid potential rain. Fullerton began the evening welcoming back legendry skipper Augie Garrido back to Goodwin Field for the first time since his retirement last summer. Fullerton retired his No. 16 jersey in left centerfield before he threw out the first pitch to a roaring crowd of 2,327.
The Titans will try to clinch the series vs. the Cardinal on Saturday at 6 pm PT at Goodwin Field.