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Cal Poly Rallies From 2-0 Deficit to Beat Pepperdine, 5-3

Cal Poly Rallies From 2-0 Deficit to Beat Pepperdine, 5-3


SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Senior first baseman Michael Sanderson drove in two runs and made a pair of potentially game-saving picks with the glove in the ninth inning as Cal Poly defeated Pepperdine 5-3 in a non-conference baseball game Monday night inside Baggett Stadium.

Sophomore right-hander Austin Dondanville (1-0) (pictured above) pitched three innings in relief of starter Connor Redmond for his second collegiate victory and Michael Clark, also a sophomore righty, secured the final four outs for his eighth save.

With the win, Cal Poly improved to 20-23 on the year. Pepperdine fell to 17-25 with its 10th consecutive defeat. The two teams play each other again next Tuesday in Malibu.

Sophomore center fielder Alex McKenna and sophomore shortstop Kyle Marinconz both had two of Cal Poly's eight hits, McKenna knocking in an insurance run with a sixth-inning single.

Pepperdine's seven hits included a single and double by designated hitter Aaron Barnett for two RBI.

The loss went to Pepperdine starter Chandler Blanchard (1-2) as he allowed three runs and three hits over four innings.

Pepperdine scored the first two runs of the game in the third inning. A single and hit batter preceded Barnett's two-run double to the gap in right-center field.

Cal Poly rallied for the win, only its seventh in 24 games in which the opponent scores first.

The Mustangs tallied three runs in the fourth inning to turn the game around, adding single runs in the fifth and sixth frames.

Marinconz doubled to lead off the third and came home on a single to right-center field by Sanderson (pictured at right). With the bases loaded and nobody out, designated hitter Elijah Skipps's sacrifice fly to deep center field scored the second run of the inning and all three runners moved up 90 feet. Freshman second baseman Scott Ogrin's groundout to second base plated the third run.

Sanderson's grounder to third base in the fifth inning made it 4-2 and McKenna's run-scoring single in the sixth gave Cal Poly a 5-2 lead.

Jeremy Goldenetz's infield single tallied a run for Pepperdine in the seventh, but the Waves could muster only one more baserunner in the game.

With his two hits, Marinconz is 11-for-26 (.423) in his last seven games. McKenna's pair of singles make him 31-for-74 (.419) over the last five weeks.

Sanderson is 30-for-74 (.405) in the last five weeks of play and third baseman Bradlee Beesley is 25-for-56 (.446) in his last 13 games since his collision in the finale of the UC Irvine series.

Cal Poly, tied for second place in the Big West with Cal State Fullerton, visits first-place Long Beach State for a three-game weekend series at Blair Field beginning Friday night.