Timmy Richards lead-off home run in the bottom of the tenth let Cal State Fullerton escape with a 3-2 win over Maryland.. The Titans led 2-0, thanks largely to their success in swiping bases, before the Terps staged a dramatic eighth inning rally to tie the score.
Last year Mike Shawaryn outdueled CSF's Thomas Eshelman in a thrilling 2-1 game. Eshelman is in the pros now, so tonight Shawaryn faced junior RHP Blake Quinn (3-1, 2.35 era). Quinn sat out last season after transferring from Fresno State.
Fullerton steals a 2-0 lead
Quinn breezed through the first two innings, fanning five Terrapin hitters. But Andrew Bechtold singled leading off the third and Justin Morris walked. Kevin Smith sacrificed the runners over. Madison Nickens tried a safety squeeze that went right back to Quinn, so Bechtold had to hold at third. Quinn escaped the jam by fanning Nick Dunn.
The Titans got a gift run in the bottom of the third. Josh Vargas received a one out walk. He stole second, and went on to third as the throw skipped into center field. A fly ball put the Titans on the board.
In the fifth the Titans got a run without hitting anything past the infield. Tristan Hildebrand got an infield hit, then stole his first base of the season. The next batter laid down a beautiful bunt that put runners on the corners with none out. A double play grounder brought home Hildebrand.
Maryland ties the score, but loses in extra innings
The Terps finally broke through in the eighth inning and tied the score. Dunn led off with an infield single. Nick Cieri and Marty Costes followed that with singles to plate the first Terrapin run. Kevin Biondic's attempt at a sacrifice was fielded by the pitcher, who was able to throw the lead runner out at third base. Anthony Papio walked to load the bases. Bechtold hit a swinging bunt down the first base line in which the only play was at first; the Terps had tied the score. Justin Morris grounded out to end the inning.
The game stayed tied through nine, so it went into extra innings. Maryland couldn't score in their half of the tenth. Robert Galligan, who had pitched three strong innings of scoreless ball, was back on the bump in the bottom of the tenth. Lead-off hitter Timmy Richards hit a shot that went for a walk-off home run.
The Terps fell to 7-10 overall, with Galligan falling to 1-2 on the year.