June 8, 2008
Stanford Heading Back to Omaha
Castro's three-run double snaps 5-5 tie in
By Abbey Mastracco
Abbey Mastracco is an intern and a major
contributor to CollegeBaseballInsider.com this season. A senior
at Long Beach State, Abbey is the sports editor for Daily 49er
and was the beat writer for the LBSU Dirtbags. She has also
reported on PGA events around the country. Abbey is a huge
Sacramento Kings fan and likes the Giants, A's, Padres, 49ers
FULLERTON, Calif. - If your money was on
Big Brown Saturday afternoon, the outcome of the Belmont Stakes
was probably the opposite of what you were expecting.
And if your money was on national No. 5 seed Cal
State Fullerton as well Saturday afternoon, the 8-5 Stanford
upset victory was probably the opposite of what you were
The Titans (41-22) failed to make what seems like
their annual trip to Omaha. Stanford (39-22-2) became the first
team to punch its ticket as Joel Weeks grounded into a 6-4-3
double play just as the sun went down Saturday night at Goodwin
“It’s one of those things you dream about,” said
Stanford closer Drew Storen. Storen notched back-to-back saves
to lead the Cardinal to a Super Regional victory.
The Cardinal will return to Nebraska next week
after a five-year drought, and its win over perennial powerhouse
Fullerton has them more prepared than ever.
“Obviously, we’re thrilled,” said head coach Mark
Marquess. “Great game and a great effort. Cal State Fullerton is
a great team with a rich tradition. That’s why we like to play
them every year.”
After the Titans had come back to tie the game at
5-5 in the top of the sixth, the Cardinal mounted a three-run
comeback effort spurred by Jason Castro’s bases-clearing double
in the bottom of the inning.
Castro led the game finishing 3 for 4 with a run
and four RBI. Colin Walsh, a last minute replacement for Cord
Phelps, who fell ill the night before, went 2 for 4 with a walk,
driving in one and scoring three times. Joey August went 2 for 5
with a run and a pair of RBI.
For the Titans, Erik Komatsu finished 3 for 3
with a walk, a run and an RBI and Josh Fellhauer finished 2 for
5, scoring once and driving in two.
Jason Dovel (3-4) took the loss for the Titans,
as he gave up the three runs in the all-important sixth. Austin
Yount (6-3) earned the win in 5.1 innings of relief. Yount
allowed just two runs (one earned) on seven hits, walking one
and striking out three. Storen’s save was his eighth on the
In the top of the sixth, Komatsu lined a double
down the right field line to drive in Josh Fellhauer and tie the
game with just one out. Yount then intentionally walked Jared
Clark to load the bases. But a line drive to Brent Milleville at
first base allowed for an unassisted double play to end the
inning and eliminate further threat.
But with just one out in the bottom of the
inning, the Cardinal rallied back. Dovel gave up three straight
singles to load the bases with Castro at the plate.
“I wanted to see a good pitch that I could
drive,” Castro said.
The result was a double into the right field gap
that allowed Castro to advance on the throw. Castro drove in
Zach Jones, Jake Schlander and Colin Walsh to put the Cardinal
up 8-5 over the Titans with just nine outs left.
“He kind of left one over the plate a little
bit,” Castro said. “They had a shift they had been playing on us
all weekend so I just tried to drive the ball down the line.”
“Castro is a great player,” said Fullerton head
coach Dave Serrano. “He was in the right situation and that’s
what superstars do. He drove in all three runs and that was the
difference in the baseball game.”
With the all important momentum now firmly on
Stanford’s side, Yount was able to limit the Titans to just two
hits in the next inning and a third and Storen wasted no time
putting down three of the four Titans he faced in relief for the
“Momentum is a huge thing in a Super Regional,”
For Serrano, the loss meant something more to him
and his Titans than most teams could ever comprehend.
“That’s why kids come to Cal State Fullerton - to
go to Omaha,” Serrano said. “I’m disappointed. That would be the