March 28, 2007
QUITE A BATTLE: In the second inning, with runners on second and third, Spartan leadoff hitter Dennis Jones brought new definition to a quality at-bat. Falling quickly behind with two strikes, Jones worked the count to 2-2 before fouling multiple pitches away. With the pitch count in double digits, it finally became a full count. On the 16th pitch of the at-bat, Jones connected on a single to left-center, driving home E.J. Daws.
In the sixth, Jones hit a double to left field, pushing MSU's lead to 5-2. For the game, Jones went 2-for-3 with two RBI and two walks.
BLOWIN' IN THE WIND: The playing conditions at Steller Field on Wednesday afternoon did not live up to the facility's name. All day long, gusts up to 30 mph were blowing in from center field, clearly affecting the game. Outfielders from both teams were playing in far closer than normal, including MSU center fielder Dennis Jones, who made two catches just out of the infield.
SAVE SITUATION: Junior closer Mike Monterey entered the game in the bottom of the ninth inning with a runner on first base. Monterey didn't make things any easier for himself, walking his first batter before hitting Robbie Moffett to load the bases. Monterey then got Ryan Shay, the third hitter in the Falcon lineup, to pop out to shallow center field. With one out, cleanup hitter Marty Baird drilled a shot up the middle - but Monterey made a spectacular shoestring catch, then flipped the ball over to third baseman Justin Potes for the double play to end the game. It was Monterey's third save of the season.
FIRST WIN: Junior reliever Chris Cullen picked up his first win of the season by tossing three innings of scoreless relief. Cullen, who relieved starter John Dwan to begin the bottom of the third, did not allow a run and only surrendered one hit in three innings on the mound.
THANKS FOR THE HELP: Mike Monterey wasn't the only one to enter the game in a jam. In the bottom of the seventh, sophomore A.J. Dunn came on with runners on first and second and no outs. Dunn promptly struck out his first two batters swinging, but needed his defense for the third out. Brandon McFarland appeared to drive in a run for the Falcons with a shot up the middle, however, second baseman Steve Gerstenberger made a diving stop, and tossed the ball to shortstop Chris Roberts at second base to halt the rally.