Aztecs Rally Late For 4-3 Win over No. 22 Cal Poly
March 1, 2012
SAN DIEGO - Evan Potter's single through the middle of a drawn in infield brought home the winning run and completed a stirring comeback as San Diego State defeated 22nd-ranked Cal Poly, 4-3, Thursday night in the opening round of the annual Aztec Invitational presented by the Sheraton Mission Valley. With the win, the Aztecs improved to 4-6 while the Mustangs saw their record fall to 7-2.
The game was a match-up of lefties as Cal Poly's Kyle Anderson and SDSU's Cole Swanson both produced solid starting efforts for their respective teams. As is often the case, however, neither was around at the completion of the game or was involved in the decision.
San Diego State got on the board first with an unearned run in the opening frame. Back-to-back Cal Poly errors to begin the contest put runners at second and third for the home side, but Anderson nearly escaped the jam. After the next two hitter struck out, senior Jomel Torres lined a single to right to give his team the 1-0 lead.
Cal Poly wasted little time in responding as it scored a run of its own in the top of the second on a double by Nick Torres and sacrifice fly later in the inning by Chris Hoo. The visitors took the lead two innings later with a two-out run courtesy of a double by Hoo and an RBI single by Jordan Brower.
Aztec senior right-hander Mike Hachadorian came on in relief of Swanson with two out in the top of the seventh. In the eighth, he was touched up for a run on a double by Nick Torres and a pair of wild pitches that gave the Mustangs a 3-1 lead.
San Diego State's comeback began in the bottom of the eight as a single by pinch hitter Spencer Thornton, an error at first base by Cal Poly reliever Nick Grim plus a bunt single by Greg Allen loaded the bases. Matt Munoz then drove home a run with a single through the left side and Cody Smith worked a bases-loaded walk to tie the score at 3-3.
At that point, the Mustangs summoned relief ace Chase Johnson from the bullpen with the bases still loaded and nobody out. Johnson proceeded to get a pair of grounders that were turned into fielder's choices at the plate plus a strikeout to preserve the tie.
Johnson would not be as dominating in the ninth. After Hachadorian retires the ide in the top of the inning, SDSU's Steven Pallares began the bottom of the frame by beating out a chopper to shortstop. Thornton then walks, and a wild pitch move both runners up 90 feet. Potter then stroked his game-winning single up the middle to give the Aztecs the victory.
Hachadorian was credited with the win to improve to 2-0 while john was tagged with the loss to crop to 0-1. Greg Allen was the lone Aztec with more than one hit on the night as he finished with a pair of singles.
In the first two games of the Aztec Invitational earlier in the day, Milwaukee scored five unearned runs in the bottom of the ninth to defeat San Francisco, 6-5 and the University of San Diego dropped a tight 4-3 decision to Cal State Northridge.
San Diego State will next be in action on Friday (March 2) as it hosts the Milwaukee Panthers at 7:00 p.m. at Tony Gwynn Stadium. In other tourney contests, University of San Diego will face Cal Poly at 11:00 a.m. with San Francisco taking on Cal State Northridge at 3:00 p.m. at Tony Gwynn Stadium.