RIVERSIDE, Calif. – The Dixie State baseball team avenged its earlier loss in the NCAA West Regional by beating Cal-State Monterey Bay Saturday morning. But the Trailblazers ultimately were eliminated by losing Saturday night to PacWest champion and rival Cal Baptist 8-6 to complete the Trailblazers season.
Dixie State 7, Monterey Bay 4
The Trailblazers jumped out to a 4-0 lead over the first two innings and added two insurance runs late to secure the win. In the first inning, Sam Hall hit a two-RBI double to right field, then scored later in the inning on a sacrifice bunt from Trey Kamachi. In the second inning, Ryan Rodriguez singled in Drew McLaughlin to put the Trailblazers up 4-0.
After giving up a run in the third on a solo shot from CSU-MB, McLaughlin countered by hitting in Tyler Mildenberg in the top of the fourth. The Otters put up two runs in the fourth, again with another home run, to pull within 5-3.
In the seventh inning, Miles Bice got an RBI double, hitting in McLaughlin. Kamachi then traded places with Bice by knocking him in with another RBI double. The lead extended to 7-3. The Trailblazers would cede another run to CSU-MB in the eighth on a wild pitch before closer Spencer Greer got his ninth save of the year to advance Dixie State one more game.
McLaughlin and Hall both had multiple hits. Starter Aaron Pope pitched four-plus innings, allowing four hits and striking out three. Reliever Tyler Burdett got the win from the mound for his first decision of the year. The reliever pitched two-plus scoreless innings and retired eight batters. The Otters were eliminated and finished the season 34-21.
Cal Baptist 8, Dixie State 6
In the night game, the Trailblazers battled back from an early deficit to tie the game, but gave up five runs in the fourth and fifth innings and could not recover in the late innings against the Lancer pitching.
After falling behind 3-0 after two, DSU knotted the game in the third. Mildenberg came across home plate first for the Trailblazers on a wild pitch. Hall then hit a two-run shot to right field to pull the Trailblazers even.
CBU put up five runs on four hits and a critical error in the fifth to go up 8-4. Dixie State responded in the next half inning. Hall reached on a fielding error. Rodriguez then drew a walk. After a pitching change for the Lancers, Bice hit a single up the middle to score Hall. Jerome Hill then scored Rodriguez on a groundout to the shortstop. Lancer relief pitcher Carajabal then retired nine straight batters, preventing the tying run from ever entering the batter’s box.
Dixie State finishes the year 40-14. The Lancers improve to 42-12, but now must beat Cal-Poly Pomona twice Sunday to advance to the Division II World Series.
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