March 13, 2010
WESTCHESTER, Calif. - On any other afternoon the Cal State Northridge (8-5) offense would have been the star of the game as the Matador bats were responsible for scoring in six of the nine innings Saturday afternoon against the Loyola Marymount Lions (3-10). But a masterful pitching performance by Matador starter Paul Tremlin took center stage at Page Field as he threw a no-hitter for 6.1 innings to help Northridge win 13-5 and claim the weekend series.
Tremlin ended up throwing seven innings on the afternoon, allowed only two hits, and struckout a career high seven batters to earn his third win of the season.
As was the case against LMU on Friday, Northridge led the game from start to finish after jumping out to an early lead.
After falling behind 0-2 against LMU starter Ramiro Carreon in the first inning, first baseman Dominic D'Anna patiently drew a 2-2 count before blasting his first home run to right field to give Northridge an early 2-0 lead.
Designated hitter Drew Muren also scored on D'Anna's first home run of the season as he drew a walk earlier in the inning.
It was the second time in as many games that CSUN scored in the first inning as the men in red possessed a 1-0 advantage in Friday's game, a lead the would develop into an eventual 12-5 CSUN victory.
Saturday's lead would grow by one in the second when Lion first baseman Alex Guthrie could not handle a sharply hit ground ball off the bat of Matador left fielder Ridge Carpenter. Once the ball bounced off Guthrie's shoulder, that provided C.J. Belanger the window of opportunity needed to round third and head for home.
Belanger originally reached base on a single to right field which was quickly followed by a Reed bunt down the line that eventually stopped in fair territory right next to the painted line half-way between home and third.
On Carpenter's single, Reed advanced to second, and quickly rounded the base towards third once he saw Guthrie running after the ball in foul territory.
Were it not for a spot-on throw by the Lion shortstop, Reed would have scored the second run of the inning as Muren was narrowly beat to first base to prevent the Matadors from causing any further damage on the scoreboard.
It would not take long for the Matador bats to catch fire once again as second baseman Ryan Pineda led off the third inning with a single to right field, a hit that would fuel the third straight Matador scoring opportunity of the game.
Once on base, Pineda stole his eighth base in as many opportunities this season to place himself in scoring position, and was quickly joined on-base by D'Anna who drew a four-pitch walk.
Third baseman Justin DeMarco then tried to advance both runners on a sacrifice bunt towards the third baseman, but a wild throw that sailed past Lion first baseman Alex Guthrie allowed Pineda to score, and D'Anna to advance to third.
A hard hit double to the gap in left-centerfield by Belanger would bring home both D'Anna and DeMarco to extend the Northridge lead to 6-0.
The Matador offense would continue to gain momentum in the fifth inning when D'Anna drew his second walk of the game, advanced to third on Demarco's double to left-centerfield, and completed his journey around the diamond when centerfielder Nate Ring singled to left field.
After Ring stole his first base of the season to put himself within scoring distance, Belanger drove in his third run of the game on a sacrifice hit to the shortstop before catcher Connor Rhoads emptied the bases with his sacrifice fly to right field for his first RBI of the season, extending CSUN's lead to 9-0.
Another two runs would cross the plate in the sixth; Muren's double to left field would score Carpenter who led off the inning with a single to right center before Muren himself scored on Ring's double which nearly landed in the same location.
After allowing zero hits to the Lions in the first five innings of action, shortstop Joel Lincon was only inches away from reaching base as a diving catch in left field by Carpenter prevented the Lions from earning their first hit of the day.
From the moment the ball left the bat, Carpenter sprinted towards the location where he thought the ball would drop before utilizing all six feet, two inches of his frame to make the highlight reel-worthy catch to preserve Tremlin's clean sheet.
Even though CSUN scored another two runs in the seventh to expand their lead to 13-0, the eyes of everyone in attendance were on Tremlin as the Matador starter was only nine outs away from recording the first CSUN no-hitter since Reggie Sells accomplished the feat against Cal Poly on April 4, 1981.
With one out in the bottom of the seventh, Lion centerfielder Ryan Hawthorne played the role of spoiler as his double off the forty-plus foot high "Blue Monster" in left field ended Tremlin's no-hit bid.
Once the Lions ended the no-hit opportunity, their bats began to come alive in the eighth as LMU scored five runs on five hits to end CSUN's shutout in what would end up being the final score of the game, 13-5.
By winning the two games at Page Field this weekend, Northridge claimed their first three-game series since taking two of three from the Pacific Tigers in the penultimate week of the 2009 season.
Do not forget to set your clocks ahead one hour before you go to sleep tonight as the weekend series against LMU will conclude Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. at Matador Field. GameTracker and an internet radio broadcast (LMU feed) will be available for the series finale at www.GoMatadors.com.
Matadors 213 032 200 - 13 13 1
LMU 000 000 050 - 5 7 2
Win - Tremlin (3-1) Loss - Carreon (1-2) Save - None
T - 2:59 A - 331