East Bay fails to to claim ‘Bay Bridge’ title

Marissa Marshall,
Sports Editor

            The Cal State East Bay baseball team fell 3-1 in a four-game series in their battle of the Bay rivalry matchup against San Francisco State University (20-22 overall, 19-17 California Collegiate Athletic Association Conference) over the weekend.

It was an unfortunate outcome for the Pioneers as the losses dropped them to eighth place in the CCAA conference with a record of 20-22 overall and 17-19 in conference play. With the postseason looming, East Bay’s chances of making it now seem shaky.

CSUEB opened the “Bay Bridge” series on Friday with a strong performance and it looked like success was on the horizon for the Pioneers. Senior pitcher Alex Vesia had a strong performance as he went seven innings on the mound and continued his streak of not allowing any earned runs through an incredible 39 straight innings.

Senior pitcher Nick Risucci took Vesia’s place and pitched the final two innings resulting in their lone win of the series by a final of 5-1. The two pitchers allowed just one run to the Gators despite SFSU averaging six runs per game.

CSUEB senior outfielder Raymond Jones got the scoring started when he singled to left field in the top of the third inning that scored sophomore infielder Jacob Eder and gave the Pioneers a 1-0 lead.

Both East Bay and San Francisco were silent through the fourth and fifth innings, but the Pioneers woke up in the sixth inning, scoring two runs. Senior infielder Colt Parshall singled to right field which sent Jones home in the sixth inning and shortly after junior outfielder Kyosuke Ushimaru flied out, helping East Bay get on the board again.

Two innings later, Eder singled to left center field, which scored two runs for the Pioneers, which gave them a 5-0 lead by the top of the eighth inning. Those were the last runs East Bay scored and the Gators only responded with one run in the bottom of the ninth inning, which secured the Pioneers 5-1 victory.

The rest of the weekend was a disappointment for the Pioneers, as they lost the last three games to the Gators by six total runs.

On Saturday, East Bay dropped both games of the doubleheader. San Francisco managed to nab a 9-7 win in the first matchup and 7-6 in the second game after they mounted an impressive comeback.

East Bay was up 6-4 in the top of the sixth inning, but in the seventh and final inning, the Gators scored three runs in a walk-off victory.

In the final game of the series on Sunday, East Bay suffered their third loss in the row in the lowest scoring game of the series, 5-2.

The Pioneers are currently in eighth place in the CCAA conference and in order to make the postseason they will have to play some of their best baseball in their last two series versus Sonoma State (23-19, 19-17), the fifth-ranked team in CCAA, and Cal State Monterey Bay (31-11, 25-11) the top-ranked team in the conference.

It will be a challenging task for the Pioneers since only the top six teams qualify for postseason competition.