Seven Fresno State baseball pitchers combined on a one-hitter Wednesday night as the Bulldogs beat visiting UC Santa Barbara 6-1.
Fresno State (8-2) avenged one of its losses, last week at UCSB, and gained momentum heading into its Mountain West Conference-opening series this weekend at UNLV beginning Friday night.
In classic midweek college baseball form, plenty of pitchers got work: starter Nikoh Mitchell and relievers Chad Wilson, JJ Santa Cruz, Isaiah Davis, Jaime Arias, Ryan Sullivan and Tiegen Jones combined for 12 strikeouts.
Coach Mike Batesole singled out Santa Cruz for two key strikeouts that stopped a Gauchos rally in the fourth (Santa Cruz was credited with the win) as well as the freshmen pitchers (Mitchell, Arias and Jones, who’s a redshirt) for being aggressive.
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Friday’s first game at UNLV is set to start at 6:05 p.m.
Fresno State wraps up the regular season Friday night at home with a game against New Mexico.
The Bulldogs (16-12, 11-6) are in fourth place in the Mountain West and can do no worse than finish in a tie there. Wyoming, Boise State and UNLV are all tied for first at 13-4, and Colorado State’s regular season is done at 11-7.
That cements Fresno State’s start in next week’s conference tournament in Las Vegas: The Bulldogs will play Colorado State in a Tuesday quarterfinal at 2:30 p.m. at the Thomas & Mack Center. First-round games for the six lowest seeds are Monday.
The Mountain West women’s semifinals are Wednesday night (the Fresno State-Colorado winner plays in the first game at 6:30 p.m.) and the women’s championship is Friday at noon.
New Mexico comes in at 9-8 and at 21-9 has the most overall wins among Mountain West teams.
Fresno State, 7-8 overall after a winless tournament last weekend, is at the Judi Garman Classic in Fullerton beginning Friday at 3 p.m. against Cal Poly. The Bulldogs play again Friday at 8 against Charlotte; Saturday at 5 against Loyola Marymount and 7:30 against Cal State Fullerton; and Sunday at 11:30 a.m. against No. 18 Louisiana.