May 5, 2012

Riley, Johnston Homer in Loss To No. 8 Fullerton

Stockton, Calif. - Seniors Allen Riley and Daniel Johnston each hit home runs, but Pacific fell to No. 8 Cal State Fullerton Saturday, 21-4, at Klein Family Field.

The Titans (29-14 overall, 11-3 Big West) scored in eight of the nine innings.

After Fullerton scored three runs in the first, one unearned, Pacific answered with two in the bottom of the first as senior LF Brett Christopher doubled down the left field line, and Riley hit a 3-2 pitch over the wall in left, for his fifth home run of the season.

Fullerton pushed across a run in the second and Pacific LHP Travis Lumby (1-4) departed after two frames, with three earned allowed on five hits.

After a two-run third and three-run fourth off RHP Bryce Lombardi, the Tigers picked up a run back in the fourth, as Johnston crushed a 1-2 pitch to left field for his first home run of the year.

Senior LHP Joe Spizzirri tossed a scoreless fifth, but was touched for a run in the sixth and two in the seventh.

Fullerton added three in the eighth, and piled on in the ninth as five unearned runs came in as part of a six-run frame.

Sophomore 3B Curtis Gomez doubled to left to open the ninth and scored on a RBI single by senior CF Josh Simms. With the double, Gomez stretched his hitting streak to six games. The sophomore has 11 doubles on the season, which ranks seventh in the Big West. He entered the weekend 48th in the Big West in number at bats. His doubles per game average ranks in the top 150 in the NCAA.

With injuries piling up for Pacific, the Tigers started a make-shift infield with Gomez making his fourth start of the year at third base, Johnston his second start at first base, and freshman Dallas Correa making his first career start behind the plate.

Riley finished the night two-for-four with a pair of RBI to go with his ninth career home run. Senior SS Garrett Borba added a single in the eighth to finish one-for-three.

Fullerton's Carlos Lopez went two-for-seven with six RBI, including a grand slam in the ninth.

Kenny Mathews (5-0) picked up the win for the Titans, pitching seven innings, allowing three earned runs on three hits. RHP Jose Cardona allowed one earned on four hits in the final two innings.

The Tigers (11-33, 1-13 BWC) wrap up the three-game series with the Titans on Sunday at 1 p.m. at Klein Family Field.