Feb. 23, 2013
By: Matt Burkholder
STANFORD, Calif. - A walk-off three-run home run sealed the Fresno State baseball teams fate in a heart breaking 7-4 extra innings loss to No. 15 Stanford on Saturday afternoon at Sunken Diamond.
The 'Dogs forced the improbable comeback when facing their final out in the ninth inning as Chris Mariscal doubled down the left field line for his third hit of the day to start the Bulldogs rally. Once Mariscal reached third on a wild pitch, Taylor Ward singled to right field to even the game at four a piece.
Jordan Brink drew the duty of taking mound in the ninth and stepped up to the challenge, retiring Stanford's 2-3-4 hitters in order. As the game pushed on to extra innings, the 'Dogs nearly duplicated their ninth inning rally as Aaron Judge and Trent Garrison hit a pair of back-to-back singles. With two runners on and two outs, Austin Wynns hit a liner the shortstops way and was only a few steps short from beating out the throw to first to enable the go ahead run.
In the bottom half of the extra frame Brink surrendered a single to the lead-off batter, which was followed by a hit by pitch to leave the 'Dogs in a pinch with a runner placed in scoring position. Brett Michael Doran pinch hit for the Cardinal in the next at bat and came up in the biggest way, striking a bomb over the left center wall to give Stanford the walk-off win.
Fresno State starting pitcher Derick Velazquez went 7.0 innings in a gutsy outing. Velazquez allowed eight hits and two earned runs to go along with three strikeouts. Valazquez battled through a few tough innings throughout the game as fielding errors piled up. Fresno State battled through five errors on the day.
"Velazquez has some outstanding stuff," said head coach Mike Batesole. "He came into his own today, he controlled the zone far better than he did his first time out"
"The mistakes on the field are going to clean up," said Batesole. "The only way to learn is to be out there. Stanford's going to throw another great pitcher tomorrow and we're going to take another run at them."
Saturday's lineup was highlighted by the 'Dogs seven and eight hitters, Mariscal and Ward. Mariscal went 3-of-4 and crossed home plate twice. Ward went yard in the third inning over the left field fence, he went 2-of-4 with three RBI on Saturday.
The series finale against Stanford is set for 1 p.m. (PT) at Sunken Diamond. Tune into AM940 ESPN radio to catch all the action.
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