Matadors Drop Opener 8-2 to Long Beach State


The opportunities came few and far between for the Matadors, as Cal State Northridge (17-21, 4-5 Big West) fell to the Long Beach State Dirtbags (20-19, 10-3 Big West) 8-2 in the first game of a three-game series on Friday afternoon at Matador Field. After trailing 2-0 early, the Matadors were able to tie the game in the middle innings before a late charge by Long Beach State sealed the game.

Long Beach State got the scoring going in the top half of the second inning by scoring a pair of runs. After a leadoff single, an RBI double by Johnny Bekakis drove in a run. Bekakis scored later in the inning on an RBI single up the middle by Josh Guerra.

After being held without a hit through the first 5.1 innings, Kyle Attl finally broke up the no-hitter in the bottom of the fifth with a single through the left side. With two outs in the inning, Attl advanced to second on a passed ball and Ryan Raslowsky drew a walk.

Cal Vogelsang then followed with a two-run double down the left field line that plated both runners and tied the game at two runs apiece. Vogelsang also drew a walk and reached on an error in the game.

The Dirtbags regained the momentum, however, in the top of the sixth inning as they were able to score four runs to break open the game. With two outs, a three-run home run by Juan Avila capped off the Long Beach State rally.

Northridge had a chance to cut into the deficit in the bottom of the eighth inning but was unable to score a run. Miles Williams walked with two outs and Steven Keller doubled to put two runners in scoring position before a fly out ended the inning.

Long Beach State added a pair of insurance runs in the top of the ninth to close out the game.

Matt Anderson (4-2) pitched 5.0 innings and struck out two batters to earn the win and Matt Johnson tossed the final four innings to get his first save of the year for Long Beach State. Alex Muren (5-5) struck out two but allowed five earned runs in 5.1 innings to take the loss for Northridge.

Attl, Keller and Vogelsang accounted for the Northridge offense in terms of hits. Vogelsang, Attl and Williams all reached base on an error as well.

The series between the Matadors and Dirtbags will continue on Saturday, Apr. 28 at Matador Field. First pitch is scheduled 1 p.m.