FULLERTON, Calif. — Michael Lorenzen, Carlos Lopez and Keegan Dale combined for 10 of the Titans’ 13 hits and drove in a collective seven runs to help No. 19 Cal State Fullerton beat No. 14 TCU 11-10 on Sunday afternoon in an eight inning, non-conference game at Goodwin Field.
The Titans earned their first series victory of the year and won their first home series against the Horned Frogs since their annual series meetings began in 2008. Fullerton improved to 3-3 while the Frogs dropped to 2-4. Sunday’s game was cut short due to travel considerations for TCU. It was predetermined by both coaches that no new inning would be played after 2:15 p.m.
Right-hander J.D. Davis (1-0) earned the win in his first career start despite giving up five runs on seven hits over four innings. He was the beneficiary of the Titans’ important nine-run fourth and left the game leading 11-3 in fifth.
Fullerton’s middle relief of Dave Birosak, Dimitri DeLaFuente and Christian Coronado were touched for a combined five runs on six hits over two innings. Tyler Peitzmeier and Willie Kuhl pitched a scoreless seventh and eighth inning with Kuhl logging the save.
Frog hurler Trey Teakell (0-1) was touched for eight runs on eight hits in three-plus innings of work and took the loss. He faced six batters in the Titans fourth with all of them eventually coming around to score. Reliever Nick Frey allowed three additional unearned runs to come across in the fourth, but he and Kaleb Merck combined to hold the Titans scoreless over the final four frames.
TCU took a quick 2-0 lead in the top of the first courtesy of a Zac Jordan two-run single, but Fullerton scored in the first and second to tie things up at 2-2.
Lorenzen collected his first of four hits on the day to lead off the Titan first inning. He doubled to right and went to third when the right-fielder Jordan misplayed the ball. He scored on Lopez’s first of three hits to make it 2-1. Fullerton then tied it in the second when Dale singled to lead off the inning and later scored on Richy Pedroza’s two-out double to the rightfield corner.
Kyle Von Tungeln’s first career home run gave TCU its last lead of the day before the floodgates opened for Fullerton.
Fourteen Titans came to the plate in the fourth against Teakell and Frey with just five of them reaching via base hit. One walk, two hit batters, four TCU errors, a wild pitch and a passed ball also contributed to the rally that put the Titans in a commanding 11-3 lead. Lorenzen had two hits and three RBIs in the inning and Dale smashed a two-run triple to center.
TCU clawed its way back into the game scoring four times in the fourth, one in the sixth and two in the seventh. Jason Coats was 3-for-3 with 3 RBIs and Davy Wright was 3-for-3 with an RBI and two runs scored from the fifth to the eighth to lead the Frogs’ surge.
In what would be their final turn at bat, the Frogs loaded the bases in the eighth trailing 11-10 with one out. After a double, a single and a fielder’s choice putout on the bases, Kuhl intentionally walked Brett Johnson to set up the force at any base.
The Titans were looking to get two outs with one pitch, but were probably not thinking about how the end of the inning would actually transpire. Kuhl struck out Braden Mattson swinging on a slider away, but the pitch went wild and to the backstop. Josh Elander, the runner at third, tried to score but Casey Watkins’ throw back to Kuhl covering the plate was right on the money for the last out of the inning.
Fullerton batted in the bottom of the eighth, but the predetermined curfew time had elapsed, keeping the Frogs from getting another chance in the ninth.