Tritons win in 14-inning marathon

The Tritons won the first California Collegiate Athletic Association game of their season Friday, but it took them two days and 14 innings to do it.

Lyon Liew

UCSD tied the score in the bottom of the ninth inning against California State University Los Angeles Thursday evening, but the end of the game was postponed until Friday due to darkness.

After the Tritons jumped out of the gates early with a David Hawk three-run home run, the Golden Eagles erased a 7-1 deficit with a seven-run seventh inning.

After both teams traded leads, Cal State L.A. took a 10-9 lead after a squeeze bunt by Denver Berry scored pinch runner Tommy Owen.

The Tritons refused to quit and junior center fielder Matt Smith knotted the game at 10 after scoring in the bottom of the ninth on a fielder’s choice by pinch hitter Nigel Miller.

On Friday, both teams picked up where they left off and battled into the 14th inning until the Tritons triumphed with an 11-10 victory.

In the bottom of the 14th, UCSD left fielder John Bologna reached base on an Eagle error and was brought home for the victory by a Smith single after stealing second base. Triton sophomore Raf Bergstrom tossed five innings of shutout baseball to pick up the win.

The following game was hardly as exciting, since the Golden Eagles’ Chris Johnson pitched seven scoreless innings against the Tritons and Cal State L.A. won 7-2. Johnson allowed only five hits to the Triton offense, struck out four and walked none.

The Golden Eagles roughed up UCSD starting pitcher Keith Smith for nine hits and five runs in five innings, while the Tritons were only able to muster two runs on seven hits. The Tritons’ only runs of the game came in the ninth inning, when Miller hit a triple to score Matt Kennison and Matt Merriman.

Mike Miller had three hits for Cal State L.A., while Troy Young, Tim Wilderson, Rashawn Owens and Rafael Arroyo each contributed two hits to Cal State L.A. coach John Herbold’s school record-tying 397th career victory.

After the split, the Golden Eagles move to 4-8 overall and 1-1 in CCAA, while UCSD’s record is now 5-3-1 overall, 1-1 in CCAA. The two teams finish out their four-game series Feb. 10, traveling to Los Angeles for a noon doubleheader.