Long Beach State Loses Heartbreaker in 2-1 Pitcher's Duel
April 19, 2013
Santa Barbara, Calif. - Junior Jeff McNeil doubled to start off Friday's game against UC Santa Barbara, coming around to score to give the Dirtbags the lead in the top of the first, but the Gauchos' Brandon Trinkwon hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the first inning, and that score would hold for the rest of the game in a 2-1 loss for Long Beach State.
McNeil opened the game with a double, one of two on the day and three hits overall for the junior to get the Dirtbags off to a hot start. Moving over on a groundout, McNeil then came around to score on a sacrifice fly from Jeff Yamaguchi to make the score 1-0 in favor of Long Beach State (16-19, 6-4 Big West)
UC Santa Barbara (19-17, 5-5 Big West) answered back in the bottom half of the inning. Shane Carle picked up the first out of the inning, but walked Woody Woodward, and then Trinkwon hit a two-run shot, giving the Gauchos a 2-1 lead.
Pitching took over after the first inning for both teams, as Shane Carle finished with 6.1 innings pitched, allowing just the two runs, while Landon Hunt and Ty Provencher added 1.1 scoreless innings for the Dirtbags.
UCSB's Austin Pettibone was up the challenge however, going 8.1 innings and allowing just the one run despite giving up eight hits.
Long Beach State had one last chance to take or tie the game in the ninth inning, as Ino Patron led off the inning with a double. Pettibone picked up one out, then turned the ball over to Dylan Hecht in a save situation, who struck out Richard Prigatano, but the Dirtbags sophomore reached on a wild pitch, putting runners at the corners. A foul out and a strikeout by Hecht ended the threat, however, as the Gauchos held on for the win.
Long Beach State faces UC Santa Barbara for the second game in the series tomorrow, with first pitch scheduled for 2 p.m.