May 29, 1999
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Sophomore righthander Adam Johnson tossed
his third complete game of the season while the Cal State Fullerton
offense erupted for four runs in the decisive fifth, as the top-seeded
Titans advanced to the championship round of the NCAA Baseball South
Bend Regional with a 6-3 victory over No. 2-seeded Notre Dame at Eck
Fullerton (46-11), which used three home runs to account for
five of its six runs, will face the winner of Saturday night's Notre
Dame-Michigan game on Sunday at 1:00 p.m. If the Titans lose that game,
a second (and final) title game will be held at 6:00 p.m.
Johnson (10-3) scattered eight hits and five walks over his
132-pitch outing, with six strikeouts. Irish junior lefthander Tim
Kalita (4-2) was strong over the first four innings before working into
trouble in the fifth. Kalita was touched for five runs, five hits and
four walks in his four and two-thirds innings while posting six Ks.
Senior lefty Chris McKeown closed the game with a solid outing, allowing
one run on three hits.
Notre Dame (43-17) claimed early leads of 1-0 and 2-1 but went
on to strand nine runners in the game.
The decisive top of the fifth saw Kalita issue leadoff walks to
Fullerton's No. 8 and No. 9 hitters, with Craig Patterson drawing a
full-count pass while Chris Stringfellow walked on four pitches. David
Bacani's bunt moved the runners over and junior centerfielder Reed
Johnson took the next pitch for a ball before drilling his 12th home run
of the season to left-center. Chris Beck then ended Kalita's day with
his eighth home run of the season, sending a 1-1 pitch to left-center
for a 5-2 Titans lead.
The teams traded single runs over the first three innings. The
Irish struck in the bottom of the first, when freshman catcher Paul
O'Toole homered for the third straight game, drilling a 1-0 pitch over
the leftfield fence for his seventh home run of the season.
Fullerton answered in the second, when third baseman Ryan Owens
parked a 2-2 pitch over the rightfield fence for his 19th home run of
his junior season.
The Irish went back ahead in the third, sparked by O'Toole's
two-out double to right-center. Sophomore shortstop Alec Porzel then
walked on a ful count and junior leftfielder Matt Nussbaum came through
with a 3-0, run-scoring single to right field.
After Fullerton's big fifth inning, the Irish answered with a
single run in the bottom of the inning. Freshman centerfielder Steve
Stanley hit a leadoff double down the leftfield line before scoring from
third on Porzel's one-out single to right.
The Titans capped the scoring in the seventh, after Johnson's
one-out infield single, Spencer Oborn's fielder's choice and pair of
stolen bases and Beck's triple to the wall in right-center.
FULLERTON 0 1 0 0 4 0 1 0 0 -- 6 8 0
NOTRE DAME 1 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 -- 3 8 1
Adam Johnson and Craig Patterson. Tim Kalita, Chris McKeown (5) and Paul
W-Johnson (10-3). L-Kalita (4-2).
HRs-CSF: Reed Johnson (12),
Chris Beck (8), Ryan Owens (19); ND: O'Toole (7).