Sunday, April 14, 2013

Doran's gem earns Aztecs series win over Air Force

Ryan Doran delivers into the ninth inning at the Air Force Academy.

San Diego State senior right-hander Ryan Doran has been consistently outstanding on Sundays for the Aztecs this season. Doran continued his run of excellence in an 11-0 Mountain West Conference victory Sunday at the Air Force Academy that gave SDSU the series against the Falcons.

Doran (6-2) allowed eight hits over 8.1 innings with a career-high nine strikeouts and two walks. Sophomore left-hander Mike RoBards came on after Doran allowed back-to-back singles with one out and induced a game-ending double play. The victory — coupled with a complete-game 4-2 win by Michael Cederoth (9 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 2 BB, 11 SO) on Friday — enabled the Aztecs to take two of three games in the series. Air Force won the middle game by a 10-9 score.

The victory solidifies second place for the Aztecs (19-17, 10-5) in the MWC, one game behind conference-leading New Mexico (20-16, 11-4). UNLV (23-12, 8-7), Nevada (19-16, 7-8), Air Force (10-23, 4-9) and Fresno State (8-23, 3-10) round out the conference standings.

SDSU broke open a scoreless game with three runs in the third inning, added two more runs in the fifth and one in the sixth for a 6-0 advantage. The Aztecs capped the day with a five-run eighth, which was highlighted by Ryan Muno's two-run single and Jake Romanski's two-run triple. Muno had a game-high three RBI and two of SDSU's 10 hits. Ty France also had two hits and two RBI.

Doran's most difficult moment came in the fourth inning, when Air Force loaded the bases with no outs on a walk and two singles. Doran got out of the predicament by striking out the side, however. That started a stretch of 13 consecutive batters retired by Doran before allowing a single in the eighth.

The Aztecs return to the road this week as they embark on the second half of conference play with a three-game series at UNLV that begins on Friday. The other conference series this week have New Mexico at Nevada and Air Force at Fresno State. The Falcons and Bulldogs will play a five-game series as they make up two games that were cancelled because of weather when the teams met earlier in the season at Air Force.

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