Fresno State freshman pitcher Kenny Varnell recorded his first collegiate win Wednesday against Sacramento State. (Ricky Gutierrez/The Collegian)
Fresno State crushed four home runs and then cut off a comeback bid by Sacramento State on Wednesday night at Beiden Field to defeat the Hornets 7-5.
In a game filled with hits all over the field, the ‘Dogs swung their bats well, accounting for nine total hits on the night, notching the team’s 13th-straight game with seven or more hits.
Bulldogs’ freshman pitcher Kenny Varnell allowed the first run of the game but then threw four shutout innings as he became more comfortable on the mound.
Sophomore infielder Korby Batesole then drove in two runs in the second inning, with infielders Jesse Medrano and Kevin Viers scoring to give the ‘Dogs a 2-1 lead.
In the fifth, the ‘Dogs scored two more runs when both Batesole and junior infielder Scott Silva reached base on singles and came around to score on a throwing error by the Hornets’ shortstop.
But the clinching hit came in the bottom of the sixth inning from junior outfielder Austin Guibor when he cracked his second home run of the night
After Sacramento State was held to five hits through the first five innings, the Hornets got a home run and scored again to pull themselves within one run at 4-3. But in the bottom of the sixth, Guibor blasted his first home run to right field to help the ‘Dogs pull away.
“I was just trying to hit the ball hard and get things going for the team,” Guibor said. “The momentum was kind of falling, and I think we needed a boost to get back into the game.”
The great hitting continued for the ‘Dogs with Viers crushing a home run of his own to give the Bulldogs a comfortable 6-3 lead after six.
The Hornets managed to score two more runs near the end of the game, but another long ball by Guibor sealed the deal for the home team.
Three Bulldogs had a pair of hits including Guibor’s two solo home runs for his first multi-home run game as a Bulldog. He hopes the team stays consistent in conference play.
“That’s important to being a championship team. A good team is playing everybody to your level and to not get scared of the team because of their reputation,” he said. “It’s all about playing the same.”
Viers had his second consecutive multi-hit game with a solo home run and a single. Batesole added a pair of singles, drove in two runs and scored a run.
Sacramento State collected 11 hits, including five for extra bases. Sophomore outfielder Andrew McWilliam went 4-for-5 with a double, home run, three RBI and a run scored. Leadoff hitter Chris Lewis added a single, double and an RBI.
Varnell picked up his first career win, throwing 5.1 innings, allowing six hits, three earned runs, two walks and struck out two.