Bears Fall In Extras On The Farm
STANFORD – California saw an early five-run lead slip away before 15th-ranked Stanford's Grant Burton delivered a walk-off single in the bottom of the 12th inning to seal a 7-6 non-conference win over the Golden Bears Monday night at Sunken Diamond.
Four hours and 31 minutes after Monday's first pitch was tossed, Burton singled over the head of a shallow-positioned Dylan Beavers in right field to bring in the game-winning run from third base. Kody Huff sparked the Stanford rally with a one-out single and was followed by a walk to Adam Crampton; the two runners advanced into scoring position on a wild pitch before Burton's single brought home Huff. Cal's Ben Lake was charged with the loss in his second appearance of the season.
The non-conference loss concluded the five-game season series between Cal and Stanford. The Bears (26-23) won two of three games in the Big Series this past weekend, while Stanford (29-12) won both non-conference games on April 6 and Monday.
Cal found itself in front early after Joe Ammirato fired out of the gates with four strikeouts across two scoreless innings in his first career start on the mound. The Bears quickly built themselves a lead when Connor Mack smacked a three-run home run to left field in the top of the third and Nathan Manning and Dylan Beavers added RBI singles in the fourth to make it a 5-0 game.
Momentum swung into Stanford's favor shortly after, however. The Cardinal used a sacrifice fly and a two-run double to cut into the Cal lead in the fourth before plating another three runs in the fifth to take a 6-5 advantage. Three runs apiece were tagged to Mitch Benson and Vaughn Mauterer, who were the first arms out of Cal's bullpen in relief of Ammirato. Stanford seemed primed to extend its lead further, but Reuben Drogin worked Cal out of the fifth-inning jam and later stranded two Cardinal in scoring position in a scoreless sixth.
The Bears knotted it at 6-6 in the eighth when Cole Elvis drove a double into the right-field corner, scoring Keshawn Ogans from first base after he was hit by a pitch. Elvis flexed his defensive prowess the following half inning, picking off the go-ahead runner at first base before Mitchell Scott ended the inning with a swinging strikeout. Scott impressed in relief, working 2.2 hitless frames through the 10th and struck out three.
Ian Villers kept Cal alive in the 11th despite allowing a leadoff triple to Burton; the right-hander got a line out, intentionally walked two batters to load the bases and proceeded to strike out back-to-back batters to strand the winning run at third base.
Cal mustered one hit – a 12th-inning single by Ogans – over the final four frames. The Bears' best chance in extras came in the 11th when Manning reached second base following a pair of Stanford miscues, but Cal couldn't bring him home.
- Cal fell to 1-1 in extra-inning games this season.
- Connor Mack's three-run home run was his first hit since March 14. It was his second dinger this season and fourth of his career.
- Joe Ammirato struck out a career-high four batters in his two scoreless innings pitched.
- In three appearances and 4.1 innings pitched against Stanford since Friday, Mitchell Scott struck out five batters and didn't allow a hit. Scott hasn't allowed a hit in his past nine innings pitched across seven appearances.
- Dylan Beavers set a new career high with four hits. He was 4-for-6 with one double and a stolen base.
Cal heads to SoCal for a key series against No. 18 UCLA at Jackie Robinson Stadium in Los Angeles. The action starts at 6 p.m. Friday.
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