Feb. 20, 2005
FRESNO, Calif. - Junior Doug Fister won his first game of the year, pitching six strong innings, and Chase Moore hit a two-run homerun in the fourth to lead host Fresno State to a 5-4 victory over the UC Santa Barbara baseball team in Sunday afternoon's series closer.
The Bulldogs looked to be heading for more trouble early in the game, as UCSB got on the board first scoring a run in the second inning after a passed ball and another in the third as senior right fielder Matt Wilkerson hit a RBI single off of Freso State starter Doug Fister.
The Bulldogs scored one run in the third, but the Bulldogs didn't put together anything solid in the inning. Chris Huston led off the inning with a walk, and advanced to third on two groundouts. It appeared that UCSB starter Andy Graham would get out of the inning after the Bulldogs hit a third straight ground ball, but UCSB second-baseman Chris Malec misplayed the ball and the error allowed Huston to score.
A leadoff double from sophomore shortstop Chris Valaika turned into another run for the Gauchos in the third, giving them a 3-1 lead in the fourth inning, and had eight baserunners in only the fourth.
Graham got the first two outs in the fourth, but had trouble punching out Chase Moore. Will Thomas, who was on first distracted him in the first half of the at-bat, and eventually stole second. Moore would then foul off five straight fastballs from the UCSB hurler, and turned around on the 11th pitch of the at-bat, sending a two-run homer to left to tie the game at three. The sophomore picked up his first loss of the season, alloweing five hits and three earned runs to score in his five and one-thirds innings of work.
Fresno State had a different mentality after the Moore at-bat, and responded in the bottom half. Nick Moresi hit a leadoff home run, his second of the year, and Kent Sakamoto walked and stole second. A Will Thomas single put runners on the corners, and then Loren Fraser balked in a run and was immediately removed from the game.
That lead was enough for the Bulldogs who trotted out Ryan Penn and Michael Cooper to finish out the game. Cooper picked up his second save of the season, and Doug Fister picked up the win, the first for a Fresno State starter. Fister also had the longest outing for a Fresno State starter this season, pitching 6.0 innings, giving up seven hits, four runs, three earned, and issuing one walk while striking out two.
The Gauchos return home on Tuesday, Feb. 22 for a one-game showdown against Pac-10 powerhouse USC. The Gauchos and the Trojans are scheduled for a 2:00 pm first pitch at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium.