Baseball Drops Rubber Match to Air Force, 3-2

Chris Williams had his team-leading five-game hit streak snapped Sunday afternoon.
March 8, 2015

Final Stats


 

 

SAN JOSE, Calif. - The San José State University baseball team couldn't cash in on its chances and dropped the rubber match to Air Force 3-2 Sunday afternoon at Municipal Stadium.

After falling behind 2-0 in the fifth, San José State (5-10, 1-5 MW) tied the game up and had opportunities to jump ahead of Air Force (5-8, 3-3 MW), but baserunning mistakes, strikeouts and failed bunts doomed the Spartans.

"We're just not playing well. We didn't play well Saturday and today," said head coach Dave Nakama. "We don't execute, we strike out with guys on base; really all you have to do is put the ball in play and we're going to score two runs, but we strike out. I think we missed seven bunts today, so we didn't deserve to win today."

Josh Nashed (2-1) came on in the fifth in relief of starter Ross Slaney and took the loss, going 3.1 innings and allowing a pair of runs on only three hits.

Air Force's Jacob DeVries (2-2) picked up the win with a 7.0-inning, two run, four-hit, eight-strikeout performance. Trent Monaghan and Ben Yokley combined to throw the final 2.0 innings, with Yokley picking up his second save of the season.

San José State fell behind in the third when Falcons' leadoff hitter Adam Groesbeck singled down the right side off Slaney, stole second and scored on a Noah Pierce base hit through the left side.

Air Force added to its lead in the top half of the fifth, when Groesbeck once again singled, stole second and later scored, this time moving to third on a Spartan error and scoring on a Tyler Jones double.

In the bottom half, the Spartans responded with a rally of their own, sparked by a Dillan Smith leadoff walk. After DeVries hit Mercurio with the next pitch and Turtle Kuhualua struck out, Brett Bautista hit a grounder to short but beat out the back end of a would-be double play to keep the inning alive. DeVries' first pitch to Alec de Watteville sailed to the backstop to plate Smith for the Spartans' first run before de Watteville singled through the left side, bringing Bautista home to tie the game at 2-2.

That's where the score stayed until the top of the eighth, when Pierce drew a leadoff walk off Nashed and scored on Bradley Haslam's base hit off newly-entered Kuhaulua.

San José State left eight runners on base on the afternoon, with a pair of popped-up bunts, seven strikeouts by the Spartans' 3-4-5 hitters and misreads on the bases thwarting several scoring chances.

"It's just not going well right now, so we have to fight our way out of it," Nakama said. "It is a young team but at some point in time, it's baseball; you just have to make the plays, throw strikes and execute. We haven't done that."

Andre Mercurio (2-4, hit by pitch) extended his reached-base streak to 14 games with a leadoff single in the first inning, and Shane Timmons (1-2, walk, two steals) stole the first two bases of his career. David Campbell, de Watteville and Tyler Olivet added to the Spartans' six-hit attack with one hit apiece.

San José State closes out its five-game home stand with a nonconference game against Cal Poly (4-8, 0-0 Big West) on Tuesday at 6:00 p.m.

Air Force 3, San Jose State 2 (Mar 08, 2015 at San Jose, Calif.)

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Air Force........... 001 010 010 - 3 9 1 (5-8, 3-3 MW)

San Jose State...... 000 020 000 - 2 6 1 (5-10, 1-5 MW)

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Pitchers: Air Force - DeVRIES, Jacob; MONAGHAN, Trent(8); YOKLEY, Ben(8) and WILKIE, Travis.

San Jose State - Slaney, Ross; NASHED, Josh(5); KUHAULUA, Turtle(8) and Veasey, Jack.

Win-DeVRIES, Jacob(2-2) Save-YOKLEY, Ben(2) Loss-NASHED, Josh(2-1) T-2:23 A-336

Weather: 65 degrees, partly sunny