Two San Luis Obispo Blues combined to throw eight scoreless innings in a 5-1 win over the Southern California Catch on Friday night.
The Blues (17-5, 5-4) had nine hits to win the California Collegiate League series at SLO Stadium.
Texas Tech’s Tanner Gardner drove in one of the two runs in the first inning with an RBI single to score fellow Big 12 opponent (Okla. State) and teammate Dustin Williams. Williams scored the second run of in the sixth inning when Quin Walbergh drove him in from third base with a ground out.
Lefty-hander Bryan Sammons got the start for the Blues as he threw 4 1/3 scoreless innings, striking out four and giving up two hits before righty Corey Hassel came in and added six strikeouts of his own, giving up one run in 4 2/3 innings of work.
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The home team tacked out one more run in the sixth and two in the seventh thanks to a wild pitch and a squeeze play.
Play of the Game: In the top of the fifth inning, the Blues looked like they were in trouble. The first batter doubled down the left field line for the Catch, and a few batters later, the bases were loaded with one out. That’s when manager Jamie Clark called for Hassel, the side-armer from Oklahoma State, who’s listed on the roster as an outfielder. Hassel got the next Catch batter to ground into a 6-4-3 double play to end the threat.
Player of the Game: Along with getting the key double play in the fifth, Hassel struck out the side in the top of the seventh and gave up just one run and four hits on 68 pitches. The Stillwater, Okla., native sat down three consecutive Catch batters with pitches from different arm angles, ranging from traditional overhand, to side-arm to submarine. Hassel, who hit .312 last season for Oklahoma State, has been working on his pitching angles all season, hoping to become a true two-way player when he returns for his senior season.
Blue Hot: Gardner, who has spent most of the season in center field, was slotted as the designated hitter Friday night and kept his hot streak going. Gardner went 2 for 4 with an RBI and pushed his team leading batting average to .406.