Toothman pinch-hit hero in 4-1 Roadrunner win


No. 5 Alec Daily and No. 12 Austyn Tengan greet No. 7 Andrew Penner, in the 1st inning after he crosses home plate.

Vincent Perez

Sports Editor

The feeling among the CSU Bakersfield baseball program is a good one after snapping a three-game losing streak.

The Roadrunners did so by defeating Dartmouth College 4-1 at Hardt Field on Thursday night.

“It was an all-around good team win for us tonight,” said Head Coach Jeremy Beard.

Leading 2-1, freshman Jared Toothman pinch-hit in the bottom of the 7th and drove in two runs off a key single. “That was an excellent pinch-hit. He did exactly what he was supposed to do with and it changed the game,” said Beard.

That hit to left field was the turning point of the game. CSUB (7-11) led 4-1 going into the eighth.

“Coach [Beard] made a comment to me and I was able to see a pitch I wanted to hit,” said Toothman. His two RBIs gave the Roadrunners insurance runs for the eighth and ninth.

Toothman said that breaking balls were seen all night from junior Cole O’Conner (1-2) and he was ready to hit that pitch off O’Conner, who went 8 innings in his losing effort. O’Conner gave up all 4 runs on the night.

Junior Ben Cutting (1-3) earned his first win for CSUB and handled the Big Green easily, pitching 6 1/3 innings, only allowing 5 hits and 1 run. Cutting struck out 4 Dartmouth batters and threw 105 pitches, his most all season.

“It’s a great bounce-back win for us,” said Cutting.

“For me, it’s establishing strikes. I’ve struggled with that all year. Tonight, it came all together for me.”

Cutting gave junior catcher Ryan Koch credit because he set him up for success.

He has no complaints on his arm pain after his longest outing. “It feels good after a win. You can’t complain about any of that,” said Cutting.

Offensively, the Roadrunners showed execution on the diamond early on.

In the bottom of the first, Koch tripled, scoring senior designated hitter Andrew Penner and sophomore second baseman Austyn Tengan, who both singled before to reach base.

The only Dartmouth run happened due to a single from junior Matt Feinstien off Cutting. After that run, Cutting was taken out after his impressive first win and Kyle King came in for an inning work.

Senior Naithen Dewsnap came in for the save at the top of the ninth, pitching only 6 times to earn the save.

Across the country, the Roadrunners struggled to get the lead out at the College of Charleston, scoring only 5 runs in their 3-game set, March 9-11.

They lost March 11 by a score of 10-1. Before that, they lost 7-3 on March 10 and 13-1, March 9 against the Cougars (13-5).

If the Roadrunners are going to keep winning, they need more performances like tonight. Defense played a big part in their win in the opening game versus Dartmouth. The Roadrunners turned two double plays in the win and they will build off that in the coming weekend games.

“It’s been good. Up the middle, we’re young. It’s nice to see those guys working together,” said Toothman. “[Freshman shortstop Evan] Berkey had a good game, turning those double plays and we’ll go off that.” Freshman third baseman Daniel Carrizosa (2-for-3) played a vital part of that infield, as well as offensively.

The Roadrunners host Dartmouth tomorrow at 6 p.m., followed by the third game on Saturday, March 17 at the same time. Their Sunday, March 18 finale will be played at 11 a.m. All games are at Hardt Field.

CSU Bakersfield junior catcher Ryan Koch hits the ball to Dartmouth’s defense early in the 1st inning.
All photos by Aaron Mills/ The Runner