March 1, 2013
Long Beach, Calif. - Long Beach State made four errors on Friday night, undermining an 11-hit day from the offense and a quality start by Shane Carle as the Dirtbags fell to Seattle 5-4. Jeff McNeil had three hits, including a triple, to pace the offense.
Carle didn't allow a hit over his first three innings of work, and Long Beach State (5-5) took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the third inning. Michael Hill led off the inning with a double, and Josh Guerra singled to score the first run of the inning. Guerra would then come around on an RBI single by Juan Avila after a sacrifice from McNeil.
Seattle (2-8) scored the first of two unearned runs in the top of the fourth inning, but the Dirtbags answered as McNeil picked up an RBI on his second hit of the day. Another unearned run, coming off of Hill's second error of the day kept the Redhawks in the game, and it would finally cost the Dirtbags.
David Hill, making his fourth appearance of the season, retired the first Seattle batter of the seventh, but walked Ryan Somers and hit Brian Olson to put two runners on. Designated hitter Sean Narby then cracked a double down the line, scoring both runners and giving the Redhawks a 4-3 lead.
McNeil tripled to start the Dirtbags half of the seventh, and came home to score on an error by pitcher Will Dennis on a tapper back to the mound. Ino Patron advanced to second on the play, and a Jeff Yamaguchi walk put two runners on, but bad luck struck the Dirtbags as a hard liner up the middle by Richard Prigatano bounced off of the foot of Dennis at the mound and rolled back to the catcher for an unusual 1-2-3 putout to end the inning with the score tied at 4-4.
The tie didn't last, however, as Hill left a ball over the plate on the first pitch of the eighth inning and Grant Newton lifted it over the fence for a solo home run, a run that proved to be the game-winner. The Dirtbags had one last chance in the bottom of the eighth after Alex DeGoti singled and Zack Rivera walked with one out in the inning, but Seattle closer Eric Yardley worked out of the jam and finished off the ninth inning to collect his second save of the season.
The two teams return to Blair Field for game two on Saturday. First pitch is scheduled for 2 p.m.
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