"I like pitching with pressure," Cederoth said coming into the season. "I enjoy the moment. I want the ball in the big situation. I love that feeling. It's like all eyes are on me. I guess that's an ego thing, but I enjoy every second of it. My best games are in front of bigger crowds."
Cederoth took the mound against Nevada junior right-hander Braden Shipley with a number of major league scouts in attendance to see Shipley, who is expected to be drafted in the first round of June's major league draft.
The scouts came away making notes about Cederoth for next year, when he becomes draft eligible.
The 6-foot-6 Cederoth picked the perfect time to pitch the best game of his collegiate career, outdueling Shipley in a 2-0 Mountain West victory for the Aztecs at Tony Gwynn Stadium.
Cederoth (2-4) struck out a career-high 14 batters, scattered four hits and walked just one in eight innings. Shipley (4-1) also went eight innings, allowing three hits with five strikeouts and three walks. The difference was single runs he allowed SDSU in the first and third innings.
SDSU freshman closer Bubba Derby came on in the ninth inning to get the final three outs. Derby allowed a walk and a hit batter before settling down and retiring the next three hitters, the last two on strikeouts, for his seventh save.
The victory moved the second-place Aztecs (6-4, 15-15) past Nevada (5-5, 17-12) in the Mountain West standings.
Cederoth allowed just four singles — in the first inning to Austin Beyer, in the second inning to Tommy Niebergall, in the third inning to Nevada first baseman Brett Jones and in the seventh to Kewby Meyer.
The seventh was the only inning Cederoth ran into any trouble, a one-out walk to Brooks Klein and Meyer's single putting runners at the corners. Meyer was caught stealing for the second out, however, and then Cederoth struck out Nierbergall to end the inning.
Jones was the only player in the Wolf Pack starting lineup who avoided being a Cederoth strikeout victim. Cederoth, who never pitched to more than four batters in an inning, finishing strong with three strikeouts in the eighth inning.
The Aztecs scored in the first inning when Greg Allen came home from third base on Ryan Muno's sacrifice fly to left field. Their second run came in the third inning when Allen singled teammate Matt Munoz home from second.
SDSU and Nevada continue the three-game series Saturday at 2 p.m. at Tony Gwynn Stadium. Junior right-hander Philip Walby is scheduled to start on the mound for the Aztecs.