Diamond ‘Dogs close out series against Nevada 2-1


Marcos Acosta/The Collegian

Roman Angelo pitches for the Fresno State Diamond ‘Dogs.

By Robert Rivera, Contributor

Fresno State baseball defeated the University of Nevada in two of the three games the teams played over this past weekend, winning the first, 6-3, losing the second, 5-2, and winning the finale, 2-0.

 The first game got rescheduled due to weather conditions, so the ‘Dogs played a doubleheader on Saturday, March 11, and the third game on Sunday, March 12. 

Fresno State Interim Head Coach Ryan Overland shared with The Collegian the adjustments that go into unexpected doubleheaders and rain-outs. 

“They’re just prepared for the changes that are going to come. They’re ready for it. We understand that once the first pitch is made, it’s time to play, and there’s no excuses from there,” Overland said.

Fresno State 6, Nevada 3 (March 11)

The scoring began early for the ‘Dogs in the second inning when infielder Payton Allen hit a single to left-center field, scoring Tyler Davis and Sammy Augustine.

Augustine kept the momentum going in the third, scoring on an Allen double down the line. 

The Bulldogs added three runs in the fourth. Augustine scored first on Allen’s double. Nikko Mitchell then hit a triple to score Allen and Travis Welker, increasing the lead to 5-0. 

The Wolf Pack finally ended Ixan Henderson’s shutout in the sixth inning with an offensive explosion, scoring three runs. 

Nevada’s Nolan Wilson was hit with a pitch by Henderson early in the inning, followed by a double by Henry Strmecki. Nevada’s Jesse Pierce then walked to load the bases. Henderson then hit Jeff Bauser, giving Nevada its first run. 

Taylor Holder then singled to score Pierce and Strmecki making the score 5-3. Henderson ended his near six-inning performance with three earned runs, six strikeouts and only three hits. Bulldog pitcher Zach Statzer relieved Henderson.

Bulldogs Grady Morgan and Tommy Hopfe both doubled in the bottom of the seventh, with Morgan scoring Hopfe to extend the lead to 6-3. 

The game was scoreless after the seventh, and the Diamond ‘Dogs would go on to win the first game of the doubleheader, 6-3. 

Bulldog Allen spoke with The Collegian after his three-RBI performance in Game 1. 

“I was just trying to simplify things. I’ve been having a little bit of a rough go of it, so really just trying to simplify and get the job done for the team,” Allen said.

Fresno State 2, Nevada 5 (March 11)

Jake Dixon pitched for the ‘Dogs in Game 2 and had the Wolf Pack scoreless up until the sixth inning after a lightning delay halted play. 

The Wolf Pack piled on five hits and four runs in the sixth inning, with the first run being the result of a balk by Dixon. 

Pierce tripled shortly after to score Strmecki, who had reached second base on a double, ending Dixon’s performance. Victor Arreola replaced Dixon on the mound.

Arreola gave up a walk and threw a wild pitch which allowed the Wolf Pack’s Pierce to score. Nevada continued its run with another single by Seth Sweet-Chick to bring in Derek Tenney. The Wolf Pack led 4-0 at the end of the sixth.

Wolf Pack pitcher Jason Doktorczyk ended his performance in the seventh after 6 shut-out innings and seven strikeouts. He was replaced by Clayton Ray.

Nevada’s Tenny stole home in the eighth inning, making the score 5-0.

The Bulldogs finally scored in the bottom of the eighth with a Davis double to bring in Morgan, who had reached first base on an error, and Hopfe, who had walked. 

The Diamond  ‘Dogs couldn’t complete the comeback and lost Game 2 of the doubleheader, 5-3. 

Fresno State 2, Nevada 0 (March 12)

Bulldog Roman Angelo was the pitcher for the final game of the series on Sunday afternoon. 

It wasn’t until the fourth inning when Augustine grounded out to score Mitchell, who had reached base on a single and was advanced to third by a Newton bunt and Hopfe walk. The ‘Dogs ended the fourth inning leading the game, 1-0. 

Angelo ended his performance in the sixth. He tied his career-high strikeouts with seven, only giving up three hits and no runs. 

In the seventh, the crowd cheered as Bobby Blandford hit his first home run of the season to increase the lead to 2-0. 

Bulldog Bobby Blandford spoke with The Collegian about his home run. 

“It helps tremendously, especially the pitchers. Phenomenal pitching kept us in the game. When we have the lead, you have a little more comfort to be yourself at the plate and do your thing and help the team win,” he said.

The Diamond ‘Dogs improved their overall record to 8-6, and are scheduled to face Sacramento State at Pete Beiden Field in Bob Bennett Stadium on Wednesday, March 15 at 6:05 p.m.