March 3, 2011
BEAUMONT, Texas - The Cal State Northridge Matadors (5-4) scored the tying run in the top of the ninth inning but surrendered the game-winning run in the bottom half to lose 6-5 to the New Mexico State Aggies (9-0) at the YMBL Cardinal Classic on Thursday.
The Matadors led by as many as three runs in the game, but could not hold on to the lead and found themselves coming from behind to force a bottom of the ninth.
Northridge, the visitors in this neutral-site game, scored the first run of the game in the top of the fourth inning. Designated hitter Marty Bowen extended his hit streak to five games with a lead-off single. Bowen advanced to second on a ground out by leftfielder Adam Barry.
With two out, Tommy Simis was hit by a pitch and shortstop Kyle Attl singled to score Bowen. Attl finished the day 4-for-4 from the plate with one RBI, and was due to lead off the 10th inning for the Matadors if the game had gone to extra innings.
Northridge added two more runs in the fifth after Ridge Carpenter doubled to lead things off. Centerfielder Andrew Muren singled and advanced to second on a throwing error and Carpenter scored. Justin De Marco came up with bases loaded in the inning and hit a sacrifice fly to score Muren.
The Aggies struck for five runs in the bottom of the fifth to take a 5-3 lead.
The Matadors were left playing catch-up the rest of the way, and they were able to cut the lead in half in the seventh inning. Steven Keller produced a one-out single and later scored on a wild pitch.
In the top half of the ninth, Muren reached on a fielding error by the second baseman. Keller sacrificed Muren to second, and Nathan Ring recorded his second hit of the season to score Muren and tie the game,
Senior Ryan Juarez (1-2) pitched 1.1 innings in relief and gave up the game-winning single in the losing effort.
The Matadors will play their second game at the YMBL Cardinal Classic on Friday afternoon against the host Lamar University Cardinals at 6:30 p.m. CT.