FRESNO, Calif. — The CSUB offense provided plenty of power and Mickey Jannis had a solid 7 2/3 innings on the mound, but the Roadrunners could not overcome four fielding errors that led to a pair of unearned runs in a 9-8 loss to Fresno State Friday night at Beiden Field.
The loss was the third straight one-run heartbreaker for the Roadrunners who are now 4-20 on the season. Fresno State moved to 15-11 overall and 15-3 on their home field.
A two out rally to open the game put the Roadrunners ahead 1-0. After leadoff Brandon Boren grounded out and Kyle Richardson struck out, freshman right-fielder Ryan McIntyre kept his now 10-game hit streak alive with a single up the middle. Jeremy Rodriguez followed with a walk and Martin Medina drove McIntyre home with a single through the left side. A Stuart Smith single through the left side advanced runners to second and third, but Rodriguez attempted to head all the way home and was thrown out to end the inning.
With two outs in the bottom of the first, Fresno State scored a single run, courtesy of a Roadrunner error and a single, then tacked on another run in the second on a walk and two-out RBI double.
Bakersfield kept pace offensively with a pair of runs on four hits in the top of the third, retaking the lead, 3-2. With one out, Richardson, McIntyre and Rodriguez knocked consecutive singles to load the bases and Medina came up with the fourth straight hit to plate a run. Smith followed with a sacrifice fly to right field, sending McIntyre home.
In the bottom of the third, the Bulldogs loaded the bases on a pair of walks, a single and a fielder’s choice for Steve Detwiler who knocked a ground out RBI to third, tying the score 3-3. But the Roadrunners continued to make solid contact against Fresno State starter Derek Benny, tacking on two more in the fourth on an RBI single by Boren and a fielder’s choice RBI by Richardson.
Four hits and three Bakersfield errors helped Fresno State erupt for five runs in the fifth, but Bakersfield would not be outdone, drawing the third tie of the game in the top of the sixth. The Roadrunners loaded the bases on a hit by pitch, fielder’s choice, walk and single, forcing reliever Tom Harlan to replace Benny. But Harlan struggled to find his mark, giving up one run on a wild pitch, the second on a single to left and the third on a passed ball.
Jannis opened the eighth with a pair of strikeouts, then delivered four consecutive balls to walk Danny Muno. The ensuing batter, Tom Mendonca, then drove a long single to left field, sending Muno around the bases. A collision at home plate between Muno and CSUB’s Rodriguez was called in the Bulldogs’ favor as Rodriguez was called for interference on the play, giving Mendoca his second consecutive game-winning RBI hit.
Bakersfield had one final chance to tie or retake the lead, but the heart of the order went three-up, three-down against closer Holden Sprague, who earned his first save of the season. Cody Kendall (1-0) was credited with the win for the Bulldogs, giving up just one hit in two innings of work.
For CSUB, Jannis (0-5) struck out nine, walked five, allowed 10 hits and seven earned runs in 7 2/3 innings. McIntyre collected three hits, an RBI and two runs, while Medina and designated hitter Mick Gaston had two hits apiece.
The five-game series continues Saturday at 2:05 p.m. at Beiden Field.
Score by Innings R H E
CSU Bakersfield..... 102 203 000 - 8 13 4
Fresno State........ 111 050 01X - 9 10 1
Win - Kendall (1-0). Loss - Jannis (0-5). Save - Sprague (1).
E - Boren; Richardson; McIntyre; Smith; Detwiler(2). DP - FS 2. LOB - CSUB 5; FS 8. 2B - Gaston; Mendonca(5); Grubb(2). HBP - Gaston; Detwiler. SF - Smith. SB - McIntyre; Gowens(3); Ahmady(1). CS - McIntyre.