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COLLEGE ROUNDUP : Titans Open Conference by Routing San Jose, 11-1


The Big West baseball season got underway Friday night, and not much was different for top-ranked Cal State Fullerton.

The Titans continued to be productive offensively and the pitching was steady as they won their 10th consecutive game, burying San Jose State, 11-1, in the first of a three-game series at Titan Field. Today's game is at 1 p.m.

"We were just a little rusty at the start, but we turned it around in the fifth inning," Fullerton Coach Augie Garrido said. "I think we probably missed the midweek game that we lost to the rain."

Right-hander Jon Ward (5-2) picked up the victory, giving up six hits and striking out six in six innings. Jason Simontacchi (1-5) took the loss, giving up eight hits in six innings. The Titans had 11 hits.

"Our pitching did well with runners on base the whole night," Garrido said. "I was pleased about that."

San Jose State (11-16-1) committed five errors.

The Titans (25-3) scored a run in the first without a hit. C.J. Ankrum led off with a walk, advanced to third on a pair of wild pitches and scored when Mark Kotsay grounded out.

Ward got into trouble in the second, giving up consecutive hits to Patrick Walsh and Geoff Fessenden. Walsh scored on an infield out, but Ward escaped without further damage. Jeremy Giambi, who had three hits in the game, started the Titan second with a triple and Simontacchi's third wild pitch put Fullerton ahead, 2-1.

Ward still appeared shaky in the fourth when he hit the first batter and gave up a single to Fessenden, but he again worked his way out of trouble with a strikeout and a ground ball double play.

Catcher Brian Loyd gave Ward a big assist in the fifth. Loyd threw out Brian Forman trying to steal second after a leadoff single. Then, later in the inning with two runners on, Loyd picked Eric Stevens off first to end the inning.

The Titans gave Ward breathing room with two more runs in the fifth. D.C. Olsen doubled to start the inning, advanced on Simontacchi's bad pickoff throw and scored on Loyd's single. Loyd came home later on Jack Jones' squeeze bunt, putting the Titans ahead, 4-1.

Fullerton pulled away with two runs in the sixth. Tony Miranda doubled and scored on Giambi's triple. Giambi came home on Olsen's double to make it 6-1.

A five-run Fullerton seventh put the Titans in double figures for the 12th time this season. Two walks, two Spartan errors and hits by Giambi, Tony Martinez and Jones accounted for the big inning.


In another Big West Conference game:

Long Beach State 11, Nevada 9--Jason Hodges, a junior from Cypress College, had a home run and a double, scored three runs and drove in three for host Long Beach (13-11-1, 1-0). Keith Rivera also had a home run for Long Beach. It was the first for each.

In the Pony-Louisville Softball Tournament:

CS Fullerton 1, Bowling Green 0--Freshman Brandi Isgar pitched a perfect game for the Titans (17-6), who improved to 3-0 in the tournament. The Titans won the game in the bottom of the seventh on Teresa Stippey's single to right, which scored Beth Queypo.

In their first game, the Titans defeated Oklahoma State, 3-2, with a run in the bottom of the 10th.

In the West Florida Spring Tournament:

Southern California 8, Mississippi University for Women 0--Shannon Saylor and Jen Merrow combined for a four-hitter for Southern California College.

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