April 5, 2014
By: Matt Burkholder
FRESNO, Calif. - Fresno State starting pitcher Tim Borst paced the Bulldogs from the mound while Taylor Ward knocked in two clutch runs to seal the Bulldogs 2-0 win Saturday night at Beiden Field. With the win, head coach Mike Batesole locked up his 400th career win at Fresno State and improved his Bulldogs record to 17-14 (7-7 MW).
On a night that Borst worked his longest career outing (9.0 IP), he did not walk a batter and struck out five in a masterpiece that was a complete game shutout. The sophomore right-hander surrendered five hits all night, all singles, a pair in each the second and eighth, and one in the ninth.
"Borst pitched very smart today," said Batesole. "[Borst and catcher Trent Woodward] worked exceptionally well, and it was fun to watch that excitement behind the plate.
"Execution is key. We pitched smart and played good defense, and our inside game was good. That's a good recipe."
Borst mowed through the UNLV lineup in the middle innings while Taylor Ward provided the run support the `Dogs needed.
As Borst controlled the game from the third till the eighth, he sat down 15 of 16 batters in a row. The sole Rebel to reach base came on a fielder error in the fifth during that stretch.
"Trent Woodward did a great job catching the game and keeping me under control," said Borst. We came out with some fire today and were fortunate enough to scratch off two runs off a great pitcher. Now we're going into tomorrow looking to win the series."
Rebels' starter John Richy worked eight complete innings. He struck out 11 Bulldogs on the night and allowed just two earned runs.
Ward, the designated hitter on Saturday, went 3-for-3, accounting for half of the six hits allowed by Richy all night. Ward delivered two clutch two-out RBI singles, one in the fourth and the next in the sixth for all the run support Borst would need as he put on a show from the bump.
"Tim did great and really pounded the zone tonight," said Ward. "It was really a great team win, all the way around, a solid baseball game that we really needed.
With Fresno State now in position to win the series against the top-seeded Rebels of the MW, the 'Dogs also registered Batesole's 400th career win at Fresno State.
"Tonight's win mean's a lot because it's nostalgic, " said Batesole. "It reminds me of [Nick] Moresi, [Christian] Vitters, [Doug] Fister, [Kent] Sakamoto and all the guys that got the first one of those seven rings in a row and really got things rolling for us.
"None of this happens without everyone involved, the staff and administration and everyone that supports us."
The all-in-important rubber match between the Bulldogs and Rebels will start at 1:05 p.m. on Sunday. Fresno State's Jimmy Lambert (1-3, 3.76 ERA) is scheduled to face off against Ryan Bonnell (3-2, 1.88 ERA).
Sunday is military appreciation day; all active military and veterans receive free admission to Beiden Field.
"Catch the Wave" - 2014 Fresno State baseball season tickets are now on sale and can be ordered online at gobulldogs.com or over the phone at 559-278-DOGS (3647). The official home of the Fresno State Bulldogs is 940 AM ESPN Radio.
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