Grant Newton (Bend, Ore.) made the most of his opportunity Friday night, leading off the eighth inning with a home run, and Seattle University was able to hold off Long Beach State for a 5-4 victory in collegiate baseball action Friday night at Blair Field.
Down 2-0, Seattle U cut its deficit in half in the top of the fourth inning when Sean Narby (Auburn, Wash.) reached base on an infield single, advanced to third on a stolen base and a throwing error, and scored on a double to left field by Nick Latta (Tacoma, Wash.). Long Beach State would regain its two-run advantage in the bottom of the fourth when Michael Hill scored on a single by Jeff McNeil.
In the top of the fifth inning, Landon Cray (Chimacum, Wash.) laced a one-out double to right field and scored on a single to center field by Brian Olson (Black Diamond, Wash.). Seattle U took the lead in the seventh inning as Ryan Somers (Sammamish, Wash.) walked and Olson was hit by a pitch, followed by a double down the left field line by Narby to put the Redhawks on top, 4-3.
Long Beach State tied the game in the bottom of the seventh when McNeil led off with a triple down the right field line and scored on a throwing error by Redhawk reliever Will Dennis (Saratoga, Calif.). Seattle U jumped back on top in the eighth inning when Newton launched the first pitch of the inning over the right field wall.
Dennis was credited with the victory, pitching one inning of relief while allowing one hit and one walk. Eric Yardley (Richland, Wash.) came on in relief and set down the last five Long Beach State batters in order to pick up his second save of the season. Narby led the Redhawks offensively by going 3-for-5 with a run scored and two RBI, while Newton picked up a double and the home run after coming off the bench in the sixth inning.
Long Beach State (5-5) struck first in the third inning when Michael Hill led off with a double down the right field line, advanced to third on a wild pitch, and scored on a single up the middle by Josh Guerra. Guerra would advance to second on a sacrifice bunt and come around to score on a single to right-center field hit by Juan Avila.
David Hill took the loss for Long Beach State, allowing three hits, one walk, and three runs in three innings of work. McNeil led the Dirtbags offensively, going 3-for-4 with a run scored and a run batted in.
Seattle University (2-8) will look to continue the positive momentum Saturday, March 2, in the middle game of the weekend series at Long Beach State. First pitch is scheduled for 2 p.m., with Dan Giuliani broadcasting the contest on GoSeattleU.com starting with the pregame show at approximately 1:40 p.m.