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Cal Poly Earns 3-2 Walkoff Win Over Columbia in Series Opener

Cal Poly Earns 3-2 Walkoff Win Over Columbia in Series Opener

Saturday Doubleheader Moved Up to Noon Start Due to Impending Weather

 
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Blake Wagenseller tripled to left-center field with two outs and Cole Cabrera smashed a 1-0 pitch off the base of the wall in the left-field corner to score Wagenseller and give Cal Poly a walkoff 3-2 victory over Columbia in the opening game of a four-game weekend series Friday night inside Baggett Stadium.
 
Billy Black (0-1) secured the first two outs of the ninth on long fly balls to center field and left field before Wagenseller landed his triple between Columbia left fielder Ben Porter and center fielder Jack Chernow for his first career triple.
 
Cabrera, who singled earlier in the game, ended the contest with his shot off the wall 335 feet from home plate. It was fair by about five feet.
 
Cal Poly (3-9) and Columbia (0-5) combined for just 11 hits in the game and the four pitchers used in the game — two by each team — combined for 21 strikeouts on a chilly Friday night with temperatures in the upper 40s and low 50s.
 
The win went to Mustang senior right-hander Michael Clark (1-1) as he allowed a run and two hits over three innings with two strikeouts. Mustang starter Jarred Zill gave up one run and three hits over six frames with nine strikeouts.
 
Black pitched 3 1/3 innings in relief of starter Josh Simpson for Columbia. Simpson struck out eight and allowed two runs and four hits over 5 1/3 innings in a no-decision.
 
Columbia grabbed a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth as Liam McGill doubled down the right-field line and scored on Joe Engel's single to right-center field.
 
Cal Poly answered in the bottom of the fourth as Bradlee Beesley led off with a triple to right-center field, the Mustangs' first three-bagger of the season, and trotted home on Tate Samuelson's long sacrifice fly to center field.
 
Cal Poly led 2-1 in the sixth. Connor Gurnik led off with a single, stole second and came home on Beesley's RBI single to left field. 
 
Columbia tied the game at 2-2 in the seventh as Josh Nicoloff singled with one out, stole second, took third on a groundout and scored on Austin Mowrey's first hit of the year, a single down the right-field line.
 
The Lions from the Ivy League had runners at first and second with one out in the ninth, but Clark secured a fly ball to shallow center field and a grounder to first base to escape the jam and set the stage for the two-out heroics of Wagenseller and Cabrera in the bottom of the ninth.
 
Cal Poly's six hits included two each by Beesley and Cabrera. Both had one RBI. Columbia's five hits were by five different players.
 
The Mustangs earned a win in a weekend series for the first time in 10 tries.
 
The two teams will play a doubleheader Saturday that has been moved up to a noon start due to impending weather later in the day. Junior right-hander Bobby Ay and freshman righty Bryan Woo will start on the mound for the Mustangs.
 
Photos courtesy of Owen Main | www.fansmanship.com