Baseball Hands Oklahoma First Loss of Season in High Scoring Contest

Photo Credit: Matt Brown
Photo Credit: Matt Brown

SAN DIEGO, Calif. – The Titans (4-2) recorded a season-high 15 hits as they handed Oklahoma its first loss of the season in a 8-6 victory Sunday morning in the final game of the Tony Gwynn Legacy.

Fullerton certainly made the Oklahoma pitching staff work for every out, forcing them to use eight different pitchers while earning a season-high 47 at-bats. The offense strung together four consecutive innings in which they scored at least one run.

Kyle Luckham come on in relief in the seventh and pitched two innings, giving up just one hit while striking out two batters and allowing no runs to pick up his first collegiate win. Michael Weisberg closed out the game and only faced three batters to earn his second save of the season.

The Titans appeared to break the game open in the top of the fifth inning as they scored four runs to go up 7-3. It was the third consecutive inning the Titans scored at least one run along with seven unanswered runs.

With runners on first and second with two outs, Isaiah Garcia stepped in the box for just his second at-bat as a Titan and hit a double to left center-field to drive in two runs and give Fullerton a 5-3 lead. Garcia picked up his first career hit and RBI.

The very next batter, Mitchell Berryhill doubled down the left field line to drive in Garcia and put the Titans up 6-3. Hank LoForte then came up with his second RBI of the game on a single to center-field to drive in Berryhill and give Fullerton a 7-3 advantage heading into the bottom half of the inning. LoForte went an impressive 4-for-6 on the day with two RBI.

After scoring four runs in the fifth inning the Titans looked as though they were going to run away with the game, however, Oklahoma's Tyler Hardman hit a three-run home run to put the Sooners right back in the game with a score of 7-6.

Once again, the Titans responded with a run of their own to score in four consecutive innings and push the lead to 8-6. Sahid Valenzuela began the inning with a walk before eventually advancing to second on a fielder's choice and to third on a wild pitch. Valenzuela then beat the throw home on a perfectly placed bunt by Jake Pavletich.

Fullerton fell behind early, giving up two runs in the bottom of the second inning, however, the Titans did what Titans do and come back with an answer in the top half of the third, scoring two runs on two hits.

LoForte got the Titans offense going as he typically does, beating out the throw to first on an infield single. One batter later Brett Borgogno reached on a fielder's choice and LoForte was able to advance to third on a throwing error by the Oklahoma catcher.

Daniel Cope then crushed the ball to right-field, scoring LoForte and Borgogno on a double off the wall to bring the score to 3-2 and pull the Titans back in the game. Cope's hit was his first double of the season along with his third and fourth RBI on the year.

The Titans tied the game up one inning later as Jackson Lyon got on with a two-out single before LoForte blasted a triple to right field, scoring Lyon from first and making the score 3-3 in the top of the fourth inning.

Michael Knorr started the game on the mound for the Titans and went 5.2 innings, giving up nine hits and six earned runs while striking out three. Knorr looked to have been in his groove after giving up three runs in the second inning but missed a pitch in the fifth to give up the three-run home run.

After finishing off the Tony Gwynn Legacy with a 2-1 record, the Titans move to 4-2 on the season and will host their home opener Friday against Stanford with first pitch at 7:00 p.m. PT.

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