Aztecs Unable To Overcome BYU Six-Run First Inning
Baseball drops 8-4 decision at Brigham Young
March 24, 2011
PROVO, Utah - Brigham Young scored six runs in the opening frame and San Diego State was unable to recover as it dropped an 8-4 decision to the Cougars Thursday evening at Larry Miller Field in Provo, Utah.
The contest was the season home opener for BYU, which improved to 11-10 overall and 2-2 in the Mountain West Conference. SDSU, meanwhile, fell to 6-16 (2-2 MWC).
Aztec starter Ethan Miller (2-3) was roughed up by BYU from the outset, allowing six runs on three hits and three walks in the first. Miller lasted just two-thirds of an inning as he was lifted in favor of Craig Rasmussen with two out. The sophomore left-hander gave up a pair of hits and before it was over the home side held a 6-0 lead.
The Aztecs closed within two runs in the top of the fourth, adding three to their total to make it a 6-4 game. Torres and Wilson were hit by pitch top begin the inning and were sacrificed to second and third respectively by Brad Haynal. After Cody Slader was hit by pitch to load the bases, Cody Smith singled to bring home Torres. After a strikeout, Tim Zier's grounder to shortstop went for an error allowing Wilson and Slader to score.
The Cougars, however, quickly restored their four-run advantage with a pair of runs in the bottom half of the inning as Rasmussen was touched up for four straight singles. Despite the runs, Rasmussen would go on to finish the contest, going the final 7.1 innings and allowing the two runs while recording a career-high seven strikeouts. It was the longest outing of his four-year Aztec career.
After SDSU's four-run outburst in the fourth, they were shut out over the remainder of the game by a trio of Cougar hurlers including starter Taylor Cole along with relievers Mathew Neil and Justin Shutt. Taylor, who went six innings and allowed the four runs (two earned) on five hits, picked up the win to improve to 3-1.
Chris Wilson, who had two hits (single, double) and scored once, extended his SDSU season-best hitting streak to 13 games. Jomel Torres (double, two runs) and Cody Smith (run, RBI) also had a pair of hits for the Aztecs.
San Diego State and Brigham Young will continue their three-game series on Friday, March 25, with a contest scheduled for a 6:00 p.m. (MT) start in Provo.