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Late Lead Slips Away in Eighth Inning at California

Apr 23, 2021

BERKELEY, Calif. (April 23, 2021) – Washington State saw its one-run lead slip away in the eighth inning as California scored twice in the frame to take the series-opener 3-2 at Evans Diamond Friday evening.
 
The Cougars (17-15, 5-11 Pac-12) received multiple-hit games from Kyle Manzardo, Tristan Peterson and Jake Meyer as Manzardo drove in the go-ahead run in the eighth inning. WSU saw starter Brandon White put together an impressive outing, working into the sixth inning and allowed just one unearned run on five hits and struck out six.
 
Cal (19-17, 6-7 Pac-12) rallied for two runs off the Cougar bullpen in the eighth to take the series-opener.
 
KEY MOMENTS OF THE GAME
Brandon White worked around a couple Cal threats in the early innings before the Cougar offense broke through. Peterson singled to centerfield and following a wild pitch, Van De Brake punched a two-strike pitch the other way into right field for a two-out RBI-single that saw Peterson avoid the tag at the plate for a 1-0 WSU lead.
 
Cal took advantage of a Cougar miscue in the bottom of the fifth as a failed pickoff attempt at third base went wide and down the left field line to allow the tying run to trot home. White ended the inning a couple pitches later with his sixth strikeout of the evening.
 
In the sixth, the Bears loaded the bases with one out and the Cougars went to the bullpen. Righthanded reliever Caden Kaelber saw third baseman Jack Smith make a diving backhand play, stepped on third base and fired to first for the final out and kept the game tied at one.
 
In the seventh, Cal put runners on second and third with two outs but WSU reliever Michael Newstrom ended the threat with a fly out to Jacob McKeon down the left field line.
 
In the eighth, the Cougars saw Meyer start the inning with single to third base and Kyle Russell followed with a bunt single. Two batters later, Manzardo lined the first pitch he saw in right-centerfield for the go-ahead RBI-single.
 
In the bottom of the inning, Cal got things going with runners on first and second and one out. The Cougars got a ground ball for a potential double play ball but the play could not be made at second and the WSU error loaded the bases. The next batter was hit by a pitch to bring in the tying the run in and the next batter hit a sacrifice fly to left field that scored the go-ahead run.
 
In the ninth, the Cougars put a runner on with one out but Cal ended the threat with a pair of strikeouts.
 
INSIDE THE BOX SCORE
Collin Montez started in CF for the 1st time this season, 3rd time in his career, 1st since 2019
Justin Van De Brake started in RF for the 1st time as Cougar
Jacob McKeon walked in the 4th inning to extend his on-base streak to 19 games
Van De Brake's RBI-single in the 5th extended his hitting streak to 7 games
Newstrom made his team-leading 21st appearance
Reliever Grant Taylor struck out the only batter he faced to end the 8th
 
NEXT UP
The series continues Saturday at 4 p.m. on the Pac-12 Networks.
 
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