Feb. 21, 2006
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Although experiencing quite a scare when what had been a 9-0 game was cut to 11-9, the Santa Clara University baseball team settled in and held off the Sacramento State Hornets to take the 11-9 decision and reach the .500 mark for the first time all season Tuesday evening at Stephen Schott Stadium.
Freshman Brady Fuerst went 3-for-4 for Santa Clara with a double and three runs driven in while Gabriel Alcantar also added three hits and scored three runs of his own. Pat Keiper paced the Hornets with a 3-for-5 day with a pair of RBIs.
Santa Clara (5-5) quickly jumped on Hornets starter Cyrus Sarraf, posting four runs in the second inning and then chasing him in the midst of a five-run third. Six Broncos hits plus a two-RBI triple by Matt Long put SCU comfortably ahead at 9-0.
The Hornets (4-6) chipped away at the lead, however, scoring three in the fourth as Keiper's two-out single with the bases loaded drove in a pair before Everet Rincon was thrown out trying to advance from first to third. Sac State added a run in the fifth to cut things to 9-4.
Santa Clara posted a pair of insurance runs in the seventh which proved vital later on. After reaching base on a fielder's choice and advancing to second on a throwing error, Kyle Hartz was driven in two batters later by a Fuerst single. Alcantar, who had singled a batter earlier and gone to third on Fuerst's single, scored SCU's eleventh run on a wild pitch.
Sac State made things interesting with five runs in the top of the eighth, cutting the Bronco lead to two at 11-9. Three walks and a passed ball allowed the Hornets to get one across, and three-straight hits got the Hornets to within two before reliever Jeff Lombard got pinch-hitter Kyle Aure, representing the tying run, to watch the third strike go by for the third out.
Daniel DeMarco pitched three scoreless innings of relief to earn the win and improve to 2-1 on the season. Sarraf took his first loss of the season to fall to 0-1.
Santa Clara will return to action this weekend as they travel to San Luis Obispo to take on the No. 25 Cal Poly Mustangs. Friday's game is set to begin at 6 p.m. and first pitch for Saturday and Sunday's contests is set for 1 p.m.