Aaron Arruda one-upped himself Tuesday, in the process ending a mini-slump and delivering the clinching blow in Fresno State’s victory Tuesday night over Cal Poly.
Arruda, one game after driving in three, brought home four including three on a home run as part of a seven-run fourth – capped by sophomore Zach Ashford’s first career homer – as the Bulldogs beat Cal Poly 12-8 in a nonconference game in front of 1,890 at Beiden Field at Bennett Stadium.
It took seven pitchers to make it stand up, with Fresno State improving to 14-10 overall heading into the resumption of Mountain West play Friday at front-runnning and conference favorite New Mexico.
Arruda’s infield single got the scoring started in a three-run first and his homer with two on in the fourth pushed the lead to 9-1. Ashford’s blast made it 10-1 but Cal Poly (8-16) still had some fight.
The Mustangs scored three in the fifth to make it 10-4. After the Bulldogs countered with single runs in the fifth and sixth, Cal Poly at least made it interesting with three in the top of the eighth.
Fresno State’s bullpen staggered to the finish, with Ryan Jensen walking three to force in a run before finally recording the game’s final out.
Austin Guibor, Jake Stone and Ashford each drove in a pair as part of a season-high-tying 18-hit attack. Arruda had gone 2 for 15 the past four games, though he did drive in three with a homer in an 8-7 win over San Diego State on Sunday.
Cal Poly had 13 hits, all but one singles.
Davis Moore (3-1) took over the team lead in victories, allowing an inherited runner to score but getting the final two outs of the fourth after coming in with two on to keep the Bulldogs in front 3-1.
Cal Poly is 2-10 on the road.
FRESNO STATE AT NEW MEXICO
- The series: 5:30 p.m. Friday, 1 p.m. Saturday, noon Sunday at Santa Ana Star Field in Albuquerque
- Records: Bulldogs 14-10, 5-4 Mountain West; Lobos 16-9. 9-0
- Webcast/radio: Mountain West Network (themwc.com)/KFIG (AM 940)
- Of note: New Mexico and Fresno State were picked 1-2 in the conference preseason poll, with the Lobos getting four first-place votes and the Bulldogs three. ... Entering Tuesday, the Lobos were fourth nationally while averaging nine runs per game. The Bulldogs were 69th at 6.5.