April 7, 2012
Riverside, Calif. - Senior Shawn Stuart struck out six over seven innings, picking up his second straight win to clinch a series as the Dirtbags defeated UC Riverside 8-2 on Saturday to earn Long Beach State's second straight road series victory.
Stuart tied Steve Whitaker for the fourth-longest consecutive scoreless innings streak in Long Beach State history, reaching 27.2 innings before allowing a pair of runs in the seventh inning against the Highlanders. Stuart is now 3-0 on the year, and has an ERA of 2.18.
That would be plenty of support for Long Beach State, as the Dirtbags put up eight runs on 13 hits to get the win. Sophomore Ino Patron went 3-for-4 with two RBI and scored three times to lead the Dirtbags attack, while Juan Avila finished with three RBI, tying a career high.
For the third straight game, the Dirtbags picked up a run in the top of the first. Matt Duffy tripled with one out to extend his hitting streak to 12 games, and a sacrifice fly from Patron put Long Beach State on top.
Another sacrifice fly in the third inning gave Long Beach State a 2-0 lead. After a double from Jeff McNeil and a walk to Duffy, Patron reached on an error, and Avila sent one to the outfield to put the Dirtbags up by a pair.
Long Beach State opened up their lead in the fifth inning behind a trio of two-out hits. Catcher Kellen Hoime started off the inning with a single, and after a sacrifice and an out, Ino Patron singled to bring home Hoime. Patron moved to second on a wild pitch, and then a hit from Avila scored Patron as the sophomore beat the tag at the plate, moving Avila to second. Metzger then finished up the rally with an RBI single up the middle, making the score 5-0 in favor of Long Beach State.
The Dirtbags added one more in the seventh after a leadoff triple from Ino Patron and a third sacrifice fly, the second of the day from Avila. The team's streak of scoring in every odd inning continued in the ninth, as LBSU scored twice on a wild pitch and an RBI from Bekakis.
Jake Stassi pitched two innings of perfect relief for the Dirtbags as the 49ers improved to 4-2 in the Big West and 12-17 on the year.
Long Beach State finishes a stretch where the team has played 14 of 15 games on the road this Tuesday, traveling to play San Diego State before returning to Blair Field to host UC Santa Barbara for three games next weekend.
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