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Dirtbags Take Series at CSUN with Tough 3-2 Win

April 15, 2018

Box Score

NORTHRIDGE, Calif. - With solid work from the bullpen to go along with some clutch hitting, Long Beach State (15-21, 3-3 Big West) was able to pull out a 3-2 win over CSUN (17-18, 5-4 Big West) on Sunday afternoon at Matador Field. The win gave the Dirtbags a key series victory in their first conference series away from home.

Clayton Andrews had a pair of hits and a stolen base on Sunday, including a go-ahead single with two outs in the seventh inning. After Shaq Robinson hit a one-out single and stole second, he was moved to third on a ground ball. Andrews took the 3-1 pitch the other way, lining it into left field to bring home what would prove to be the winning run.

Andrews also got the Dirtbags on the board with an RBI grounder in the third inning, also scoring Robinson. The Dirtbags were faced with a 2-0 deficit in the second inning after a two-run home run from CSUN’s Kevin Riley, but were able to get things level in the fourth inning on a squeeze play from Tristan Mercadel. He was able to get the bunt down to bring in Jarren Duran, who led off the inning with a triple to left center.

LBSU starting pitcher Tyler Radcliffe was a little wild, hitting three batters in 2.1 innings pitched, but the bullpen came in and did a great job to keep the Matadors quiet. Adam Seminaris worked 3.1 scoreless innings in relief before Eli Villalobos took over to record the next four outs. Junior closer Chris Rivera earned a two-inning save, giving him 11 on the season. LBSU pitchers recorded just four strikeouts in the game, but also did not walk a batter.

Long Beach State’s defense was strong in the win, and made a nice play to end the game. After CSUN started the bottom of the ninth with a double, the runner was moved to third to put the potential tying run just 90 feet away with one out. Rivera got the next batter to fly to center, where Andrews got behind the ball, made the catch, and sent a strong throw to the plate. The CSUN runner made it halfway down the line before realizing he couldn’t score, and was thrown out by catcher Chris Jimenez as he tried to scramble back to third base. That was the seventh Matadors baserunner Jimenez threw out in the series, as CSUN went 0-for-5 in stolen base attempts and also had a runner picked off first base by the freshman backstop. The game-ending double play was the third turned by the Dirtbags on Sunday.

Next up is a Tuesday home game for the Dirtbags at 6 p.m. against LMU. Long Beach State is back on the road next weekend for a three-game set at Cal Poly.

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