The NCAA Division II Western Regional baseball playoffs will open at Cal State Dominguez Hills Friday with a noon game between Cal State Northridge and Chico State. Dominguez Hills, the nation's third-ranked team and the top seed in the regionals, will play the loser of that game at 3 p.m.
If that team loses to the Toros it will drop out in the double-elimination format and the surviving teams will play a best-of-three series. If Dominguez Hills loses its opener, it will play Saturday morning against the winner of Friday's first game.
The Toros, who finished with a best-ever record of 39-13, have won 29 of their last 35 games and 13 of 15. Their loss in the last regular game of the season snapped a nine-game winning streak. Northridge, the conference runner-up to Dominguez Hills, is 36-20. Chico, the Northern California Athletic Conference winner, is 35-15.
The Toros have been in only one other playoff, being eliminated last year in Sacramento. For what it's worth, the host school has won six of the seven Western regionals in the 1980s, and Southern California teams have won 17 of 19 Western regionals. The Toros also like Fridays and Saturdays, with a 19-4 record on those days. They're 12-2 in Saturday games.