Saturday, April 27, 2013

Aztecs respond to Fresno State challenge in 10-8 win

SAN DIEGO, Calif. — It is crucial for a team's success to answer back when an opponent has a big inning. San Diego State did that Saturday afternoon at Tony Gwynn Stadium on the way to a 10-8 Mountain West Conference victory over Fresno State.

The Aztecs (21-21, 11-9) watched a four-run lead disappear in the top of the seventh inning when the Bulldogs (14-26, 9-11) chased starting pitcher Ryan Doran. Doran had allowed two runs coming into the seventh, but was charged with four more (three earned) in the inning before being relieved. Fresno State scored one more run to take a 7-6 lead before senior right-hander Ethan Miller could get out of the inning.

SDSU responded quickly, scoring four runs of its own in the bottom of the seventh to regain the lead. RBI singles by Steven Pallares, Matt Munoz, Greg Allen and Tim Zier keyed the comeback, giving the Aztecs a 10-7 advantage.

Miller (3-2) was credited with the victory. Freshman closer Bubba Derby pitched the eighth and nine innings for his eighth save.

SDSU opened the scoring in the second inning on first baseman Ryan Muno's second home run of the season. The Aztecs expanded their lead to 4-0 with a three-run third inning. Catcher Jake Romanski, Muno and DH Brad Haynal drove in the runs with a single, bases-loaded walk and sacrifice fly, respectively.

When Fresno State scored two runs in the fourth, the Aztecs responded an inning later with a pair of runs on singles by Muno and Haynal.

Munoz, batting leadoff, had three hits to lead the Aztecs' 13-hit attack. Muno had two hits and a game-high three RBI.

The teams conclude the three-game series Sunday at 1 p.m. at Tony Gwynn Stadium. Junior right-hander Philip Walby is the scheduled starter for the Aztecs.

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