March 15, 2009
NORTHRIDGE, Calif.- - Unlike the first two games of the series, the Cal State Northridge Matadors (6-10) were unable to muster a late-inning charge Sunday afternoon at Matador Field as they fell to the San Jose State Spartans (11-3) for the second straight game by a score of 6-1.
Northridge third basemen Ryan Pineda extended his Big West Conference-leading hit streak to 16 games and has now hit safely in every Matador game this season. Pineda extended the streak with an RBI single to center field, scoring left-fielder Richard Cates in the bottom of the seventh that put CSUN on the board.
Pineda is currently leading the Matadors in several offensive categories. He has now 26 hits on the season, 18 RBI's, and is batting .406. He also leads the team in home runs with five and in runs scored with 13.
Spartan starting pitcher Scott Sobczak (3-0) kept the Matadors off the board most of the afternoon. The right-hander limited Northridge to only one run on six hits in his seven innings of work and got plenty of run support early.
San Jose State wasted no time jumping on Northridge on Sunday. In the top-half of the first inning, second basemen Michael Reiling and third basemen Tyler Heil would lead off the game by reaching base on a walk and on a single respectively. Reiling would later score on a wild pitch giving San Jose State an early 1-0 lead.
Similar to Saturday's game, the third inning would be the most damaging for CSUN. The Spartans racked up three runs on four hits highlighted by a two run single off the bat of right-fielder John Shaffer.
In the home half of the third, Northridge looked like they would provide yet another comeback effort. Shortstop Jason Dabbs hit a one out single off Spartan shortstop Kyle Bellow's glove. CSUN then executed a hit and run, with second basemen TS Reed providing the hitting and Dabbs supplying the running. With runners at the corners, center fielder Jeff Pruitt was next but could not continue the rally as he hit into an inning ending double play.
Despite the loss, the Matador bullpen provided great relief and kept the game from getting out of hand. In the top of the fourth, Matador reliever P.J. Rousey retired the Spartans in order including striking out two batters.
In the top-half of the fifth, Northridge reliever Jimmy Jolicoeur entered the game after the Spartans loaded the bases. With only one out in the inning, Jolicoeur would get the Matadors out of the jam by striking out the next two batters swinging.
Right-handed reliever Brian Slover pitched two shutout innings for the Matadors, striking out three batters. Slover lowered his sparkling ERA to 0.82 with his performance Sunday.
In total, the Matador relievers combined to strike out eight batters in their six innings of relief.
CSUN will return to the diamond to play game four of their eight-game home stand on Tuesday afternoon when they take on the BYU Cougars. First pitch is scheduled for 2:00 p.m. at Matador Field.
San Jose St. 103 010 100 - 6 13 1
Matadors 000 000 100 - 1 7 1
Win- Sobczak (3-0) Loss- Harper (0-2)
T- 2:50 A-165