Baseball: Sixth inning rally lifts CSUN over George Washington University 10-3

CSUN right fielder Chester Pak at the plate before hitting his homer against George Washington University Friday, March 13. Photo credit: Vincent Nguyen

CSUN baseball used a six run sixth inning to break open the 3-3 tie, as the Matadors defeated the George Washington Colonials by the final of 10-3 on Friday afternoon at Matador Field.

Right fielder Chester Pak was a double shy of hitting for the cycle after he went 3-for-4 with three RBIs and three runs scored.

The Matador’s sixth inning six-runs on Friday matched the largest scoring frame of the season. They last scored six runs in an inning was on February 24 in a 10-1 victory over Grand Canyon University.

“It shows how hard the team is running the bases,” said Coach Greg Moore about the Matadors’ offensive outbursts of late. “Once the ball is moving across the field, the base runners are moving first to third base, second to home plate and even first to home on hits to the deep part of the outfield. It has been fun to see and it has been consistent all season.”

The Matadors led 2-0 through three innings thanks to a sac fly RBI by second baseman Ryan Raslowsky in the top of the first to score Pak after he led off the inning with a triple. In the third inning, center fielder Justin Toerner hit a RBI single to score third baseman William Colantono.

“Chester’s first at bat was his best of the day,” said Coach Moore. “He worked a 3-2 count and he stayed through the next pitch to hit it into the air in center field. It was a quality at bat from a leadoff hitter.”

The top four hitters in the lineup combined for seven hits, 7 RBIs and four runs. This is coming off their previous game in which they combined for five hits, two runs and three RBIs.

The Colonials then scored two runs in the top of the sixth inning to tie the game on a RBI fielders choice and an RBI sac bunt.

Starting pitcher Calvin Copping picked up his third victory of the season, as he pitched 6.1 innings, allowing three hits and two earned runs, while striking out seven Colonials.

“I thought he was very workman like, he made pitches to both sides of the plate,” said CSUN Head Coach Greg Moore who thinks Copping has room to grow. “I was especially proud that he steadied up and made a few pitches to get his final hitter.”

Shortstop Yusuke Akitoshi started the rally in the bottom of the sixth inning with a single up the middle, extending his hitting streak to 11 games. This matched Raslowsky’s 11 game hitting streak earlier this season.

“I think Yusuke is getting better all the time and getting more comfortable rep by rep, said Coach Moore who is very impressed by how well he prepares before and after games. “He had the flu yesterday and he was running sprints this morning before everyone got here just to sweat it out.”

Despite the victory, Coach Moore didn’t think the team played that well.

“We need to be better at capitalizing in some of the earlier counts and we need to do a better job of communicating when the ball is on the ground.”

CSUN continues its three-game series by taking on George Washington on Saturday afternoon at 2 p.m. at Matador Field. Senior Jerry Keel (2-0) will get the start for the Matadors in the contest.