LOS ANGELES—Loyola Marymount outslugged CSU Bakersfield 10-7 Wednesday night.
The Roadrunners took a 2-0 lead in the top of the second as CSUB received RBI’s from Jake Ortega and Mark Pena. Trevin Esquerra’s two-out two-run home run in the bottom of the second tied the game. Max Carter’s one-out double scored David Metzgar and returned the lead to Roadrunners in the top of the third. With two outs, Ryan Grotjohn drove in Carter with a single.
With one out in the bottom of the third, Niko Decolati doubled in Phil Caulfield for the Lions. One out later, Steven Chavez’s single plated Decolati. After a Steven Chavez, base hit. Joe Murray regained the advantage for LMU at 5-4 with an RBI single.
Pena opened the top of the fifth with a double and moved to third with one out on a wild pitch. Metzgar hit a grounder to Esquerra at first. Instead of taking the sure out, he threw home to try to get Pena at the plate. The throw was not in time, as Pena scored to give Metzgar an RBI.
Decolati singled to begin the LMU fifth. After stealing second, he advanced to third on Billy Wilson’s ground out to second. Chavez, the Lions’ cleanup hitter, hit a grounder to Carter at third. Carter threw home for the second out. Brandon Shearer grounded out to end the inning. Jake Ortega singled with one out in the sixth.
He moved up to second on a wild pitch. Luis Martinez, the ‘Runner DH, walked. Sergio Robles fouled out. Harrison Simon, the third LMU pitcher of the game came on to face Pena. Simon’s first pitch went to the backstop for a passed ball. Both baserunners advanced 90 feet. Pena put CSUB ahead for the third time on the night with a single that scored two.
Johnson hit Murray on the first pitch of the Loyola Marymount sixth. Esquerra followed with a walk. Nathan Keavy laid down a successful sacrifice bunt that advanced Murray and Esquerra. Kevin Jordan walked to load the bases. Caulfield, the current West Coast Conference Hitter of the Week, smacked a grand slam to put the Lions up by two. A pair of CSUB errors led to an unearned LMU run in the bottom of the seventh.
Decolati went 3-for-5 and pitched the final two innings to record the save. Pena recorded three of the nine CSUB hits. The four CSUB pitchers that were on the hill struck out 10 LMU batters.
"We let this one slip away," said CSUB interim head coach Jeremy Beard. "If we can get a few pitchers to make better pitches, work ahead in the count, and use our defense, we will be tough to beat. I am proud of our effort and competitive attitude. We look forward to playing at home this weekend."
CSUB (11-9, 0-3 WAC) welcomes UT Rio Grande Valley (16-13, 0-3 WAC) to Hardt Field in the first home Western Athletic Conference baseball series this weekend. Friday’s opener is set for 6 p.m. Coverage on ESPN 98.1 FM/1230 AM begins at 5:45 p.m. with Corey Costelloe’s pre-game show. The game is also available on the Roadrunner Sports Network (via Youtube.com).