No. 25 Aztecs split doubleheader in series finale against Air Force


Photo by Perla Sanchez

Junior catcher Dean Nevarez heads back to the dugout to celebrate with his teammates after hitting a home run during the Aztecs 3-2 victory over Air Force on March 11 at Tony Gwynn Stadium.

by Justin Wylie, Staff Writer

No. 25 San Diego State baseball split a doubleheader against the Air Force Academy on Sunday, dropping the first game 7-3, before winning 3-2 in the nightcap at Tony Gwynn Stadium.

The Aztecs are now 10-5 on the year, and improved their Mountain West Conference record to 4-1.

A performance to remember came in the second game of the day, after SDSU junior pitcher Garrett Hill (3-0) did not give up a hit through the first five innings.

Hill’s no-hit-bid was broken up in the top of the sixth inning, after a single through the left side of the infield by sophomore outfielder Ashton Easley.

Hill pitched 6.2 innings in total, allowing one hit and striking out eight Falcons batters.

“I was just trying to trust my stuff, hit spots, and get outs,” Hill said. “I’m just trying to keep it going, starting with a good base and going to keep that going throughout the whole season.”

Hill was pulled from the game after plunking two Falcon hitters with two outs in the top of the seventh inning, which brought the tying run to the plate.

Sophomore pitcher Adrian Mardueno came on in relief and proceeded to walk the bases loaded, but got out of the jam after Easley hit a ground ball to senior shortstop David Hensley.

The Aztecs started the scoring in the very first inning, after an errant throw by Falcons third basemen Ryan Robb allowed freshman outfielder Matt Rudick to score.

A sacrifice fly by junior infielder Jordan Verdon would bring in Hensley for the second run of the inning.

Junior catcher Dean Nevarez extended the Aztecs lead in the second inning, blasting his first homerun of the season over the left field wall.

“I was just trying to keep things simple, trust my ability and put a good swing on the ball,” Nevarez said.

In the first game, the Falcons used a four run fifth and a two run sixth to pull away from the Aztecs.

SDSU redshirt junior pitcher Harrison Pyatt (1-1) was saddled with the loss after giving up eight hits and six runs (five earned) in five innings of work.

Air Force junior pitcher Matt Hargreaves (1-3) earned his first win of the season, allowing only one run on nine hits in seven innings.

The Aztecs next game will be against University of San Diego on March 20 at USD’s Fowler Park.