April 4, 2014
FULLERTON, Calif. -- UC Davis junior Izaak Silva's RBI single drove home the go-ahead run as part of a three-run eighth inning and senior right-hander Harry Stanwyck limited host Cal State Fullerton to just six hits on the night, helping lift the Aggies to a 3-1 upset of the No. 18 Titans on Friday in front of 1,739 at Goodwin Field.
The victory ended a 16-game losing streak against the perennial powerhouse Titans, improving UC Davis to 14-12 overall and 1-3 in Big West Conference play this season. The Aggies hadn't defeated Cal State Fullerton since April 26, 2008, and marked their first win over a ranked team since a 3-2, 10-inning victory over a No. 18-ranked UC Irvine squad on April 22, 2011.
With the loss, the Titans fell to 14-11 overall, and 0-1 in league play with their third consecutive loss, suffering only the third loss in the history of the series with UC Davis, which is now 3-25 all time against Fullerton.
Stanwyck (2-4) tossed a gem for the Aggies, pitching into the eighth to claim his first win since March 7 against Pacific. Stanwyck out-dueled Titan ace Thomas Eshelman (5-1), allowing just the one run while walking three and striking out two in 7.1 innings of work.
Freshman closer Zach Stone came on to close the door, working around a walk and stranding two in the eighth before getting a huge double play in the ninth to help nail down his seventh save of the season.
Trailing by a run entering the eighth, senior outfielder Seth Batty got the rally started on a triple that got by a diving Austin Diemer in center and rolled all the way to the wall, and was followed by Adam Young, who was hit by pitch to put runners on the corners for Steven Patterson. The Aggies' senior second baseman, who finished 2-for-4 on the night, came through, lacing a single to center to score Batty and tie the game at one.
then followed with a bunt to the left side where Young beat the throw to third to load the bases and chase Eshelman from the game. Reliever Tyler Peitzmeier struck out the only batter he faced and Titans' closer Koby Gauna got another strikeout to put the home side one out away from escaping the jam.
However, Silva kept the Aggies rolling, chopping a ball to the right side where it was fielded cleanly by first baseman Tanner Pinkston, but no one covered the bag, allowing Silva to reach safely. Young scored on the play to put UC Davis ahead and was closely followed by Patterson, who came all the way around to touch home plate when an errant throw to first to try and get Silva found no one there to catch it, making it 3-1 in favor of the Aggies.
UC Davis then wriggled out of a pair of jams in the final two innings as Stone stranded the tying run in scoring position in the eighth, getting a ground ball with two on to end the inning, then, following an error to lead-off the ninth, induced Tyler Stieb into a 4-6-3 double play before pinch-hitter Jake Jefferies flew out to left to end the game.
Eshelman suffered his first loss of the season, charged with three runs (two earned) on five hits and striking out seven against no walks in seven innings of work.
It was a pitchers duel through the first seven innings as the Aggies managed a bunt single by Patterson through the first four innings while Stanwyck and the UC Davis defense worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the first and held the Titans to their only run on an RBI double by J.D. Davis in the third.
Eshelman retired 11 straight at one point until Kevin Barker was hit by a pitch with one out in the fifth as the Aggies loaded the bases on singles by Spencer Brann and John Williams. However, the Fullerton right-hander wriggled off the hook with an inning-ending ground ball to keep his team up one.
The Titans left runners in scoring position in the sixth and seventh innings prior to UC Davis' winning rally, stranding eight for the game -- six of those in scoring position.
The two teams continue their series with game two on Saturday night (April 5). First pitch is scheduled for 6 p.m. from Fullerton, Calif.