Stanford Outlasts Cal State Fullerton In NCAA First Round, 3-2 In 13 Innings

May 31, 2002

Stanford, Calif. - Stanford (41-16) outlasted Cal State Fullerton (36-21) with a 3-2 victory in 13 innings in a first round game of the NCAA Regional at Sunken Diamond on Friday. Jeremy Guthrie (11-1) pitched a 13-inning complete game to earn the victory, scattering nine hits and allowing two runs, improving his career record to 24-5 overall and 15-1 at Sunken Diamond. Scott Dragicevich's one-out RBI single with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 13th inning off Cal State Fullerton reliever and losing pitcher Sean Martin (2-1) scored Donny Lucy with the game-winning run.

'It was a classic college baseball game,' said Stanford head coach Mark Marquess. 'There was a lot riding on this game and there were two great pitching performances. It was just a great college game, with a great crowd and some great plays. We've played some good games with Cal State Fullerton. We played a tight game against them at the College World Series last year. It's just tough for anyone to lose that game.'

Top-seeded Stanford advances to face second-seeded Long Beach State in a winners bracket game of the Regional on Saturday (3:00 pm, PDT). Stanford lefthander Tim Cunningham (8-2, 3.83) is scheduled to pitch against Long Beach State lefthander Abe Alvarez (12-2, 2.55). Long Beach State defeated San Jose State, 6-3, in the first game of the Regional on Friday.

Fourth seeded Cal State Fullerton returns to Sunken Diamond on Saturday for an elimination game versus San Jose State (11 am, PDT). Cal State Fullerton's Jordan DeJong (10-3, 4.27) is scheduled to pitch against San Jose State's Jahseam George.

'Physically, I could've gone longer, but I would've come out after that inning,' said Guthrie. 'He (Littleton) pitched a great game. We knew we were going to be up against a great pitcher, and he didn't let us down. There were just so many thoughts and so much emotions and gratefulness in my heart. I just wanted to go out there and help the team win until the very end.'

Donny Lucy started Stanford's 13th inning with a leadoff double before Jason Cooper was intentionally walked. Chris O'Riordan moved the runners to second and third base with a sacrifice bunt and Carlos Quentin was intentionally walked to set up Dragicevich's RBI single.Stanford and Cal State Fullerton played to a scoreless tie for the first six innings as Guthrie and Cal State Fullerton's Wes Littleton matched scoreless innings before the Titans finally broke through for a run off Guthrie in the top of the seventh to take a 1-0 lead and snap his consecutive scoreless inning streak at 25. Guthrie walked David Fischer before he was bunted to second base by Jason Corapci and scored on an RBI single by Mike Martinez.

The Titans added another run in the top of the eighth inning to take a 2-0 lead when Chris Stringfellow singled to lead off the inning and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Justin Smyers that Guthrie misplayed for an error to put runners on first and second base with no outs. Shane Costa's sacrifice bunt gave the Titans runners on second and third base with one out before Guthrie intentionally walked Geoff Comfort to load the bases. Guthrie struck out Nick Fitzgerald for the second out before hitting Fischer with a pitch to score Stringfellow from third with an unearned run.

Stanford started its 19th comeback victory of the season with a run in the bottom of the eighth to cut the Cal State Fullerton lead to 2-1. Dragicevich doubled to lead off the inning and was stranded at second before scoring on a two-out RBI single by Chris Carter.

The Cardinal tied the game at 2-2 with a run in the bottom of the ninth inning. Ryan Garko started the rally with a leadoff single through the hole between shortstop and third base. Pinch-runner Tobin Swope stole second base with one out and scored on an RBI single by Chris O'Riordan.

Sam Fuld extended his hitting streak to nine games for the Cardinal by going 2-for-6 with a double, marking the 22nd time in the last 25 games that Fuld has had two or more hits in a contest. Fuld is hitting .509 (56-110) over his last 25 games and .394 on the season. He also picked up his 100th and 101st hits of the season on Friday, moving him up to a fifth-place tie on Stanford's single season hit list and only seven hits shy of equaling the school record of 108 co-held by Troy Paulsen (1990) and Mike Dotterer (1981).

Cooper (2-5), Dragicevich (2-6, 2B) and Carter (2-6, RBI) also had two hits each for the Cardinal.

The 13-inning game tied for the second longest post-season game in Stanford history. The Cardinal lost a 4-3 game in 14 innings to Arizona State at the College World Series on June 17, 1967. Stanford also lost a 13-inning game to Florida State, 14-11, at the College World Series on June 18, 1998.

Stanford improved to 25-4 at Sunken Diamond this season.

Martinez (2-6, RBI) was the only Cal State Fullerton player with more than one hit.

Titan starter Wes Littleton picked up a no-decision, scattering seven hits and two runs over the first 8.1 innings.

The loss for Cal State Fullerton marked the first time in 85 games that the Titans have lost when they entered the ninth inning with the lead.

'It's going to be difficult, probably the toughest part is the turnaround,' said Cal State Fullerton head coach George Horton. 'Going this late tonight and having to play in 12 hours, but my team will be ready.'

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