Aztecs Defeat St. Mary's, 4-1, To Even Weekend Series
March 10, 2012
SAN DIEGO - Behind a strong starting pitching performance from junior right-hander Travis Pitcher, San Diego State evened its weekend series against St. Mary's at one game apiece with a 4-1 victory over the Gaels Saturday evening at Tony Gwynn Stadium.
With the win, the Aztecs improved to 9-7 as they won for the sixth time in their last seven outings. St. Mary's, meanwhile saw its record fall to 9-6.
Pitcher began the contest by striking out the side in the top of the first, and it was just the start of his mastery on the night. He would go six innings, allowing a run on four hits while walking four and striking out 13 as he improved to 2-0 on the season.
The Gaels' run came in the top of the second on a two-out triple to right center by Chris Murphy that scored Patrick Wisdom, who had singled with one out and been sacrificed to second.
The visitors' lead did not last long, however, as SDSU answered with a pair of runs in the bottom of the frame. A single by Spencer Thornton and walks to Seby Zavala and Cody Slader loaded the bases, and shortstop Evan Potter delivered a run-scoring single to left to tie the contest at 1-1. Tim Zier then walked to bring home the lead run as the Aztecs took a lead they would not relinquish.
Two innings later, Slader's triple to deep center field was cashed in by Zier, whose two-out single gave SDSU a 3-1 lead. The Aztecs' final run came in the sixth as Thornton singled and came around on Zavala's long double to left.
All four of San Diego State's runs came at the expense of St. Mary's starter Kyle Barraclough, who would be charged with the loss to fall to 1-2.
Aztec sophomore Justin Hepner came on to pitch to begin the seventh and went the final three innings allowing just a walk while recording two strikeouts. That base on balls came in the ninth inning and was erased by a game-ending double play that gave Hepner his second save in the last three contests.
Thornton was the lone Aztec with more than one hit on the night as he recorded a pair of singles and scored once. Zier had two RBI in the contest while Zavala and Potter and a hit and RBI each.
St. Mary's and San Diego State will play the rubber game of their three-game series on Sunday (March 11) with a contest scheduled to get underway at 1:00 p.m.