Gator baseball loses to Cal State Monterey Bay Otters

SF State's Preston Tater pitches the ball during the home game against CSU Monterey Bay at Mahoney Field Friday, March 7. Photo by Jessica Christian / Xpress SF State’s Preston Tater pitches the ball during the home game against CSU Monterey Bay at Mahoney Field Friday, March 7. Photo by Jessica Christian / Xpress

Faced with a 10-0 deficit at the bottom of the eighth, two quick runs sparked hopes of a Gators comeback. But like its past innings, the team was plagued by a series of strikeouts and fly balls.

It was too little too late for SF State as the lack of runs was too much to overcome in a 10-2 loss to Cal State Monterey Bay Friday, March 7 at Maloney Field.

“Obviously, it wasn’t the best game for us,” head coach Mike Cummins said. “(Monterey Bay) did a good job of putting some pressure on us early and we didn’t respond. They’re a good team. They’re record may be down but they won the league last year.”

After three innings, the Gators already face a big deficit as the Otters went up, 6-0. Starting pitcher Preston Tarter followed up by pitching two scoreless innings, but sat down in the sixth after he allowed two more runs.

“Just a rough, rough start. I didn’t come out and have what I had the past couple of weeks,” Tarter said. “They got up early and were finding a lot of holes to put balls in play and keep the pressure on.”

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Tarter got the loss, allowing 11 hits and nine runs in five innings, giving him a 1-4 record for the season. The Otters finished with a total of 16 hits while shutting down the Gators offense by holding them to just six.

SF State is now 11-8 overall and 6-3 in the conference. The team will look to even the score as the Gators will travel to face the Otters again in a doubleheader tomorrow, March 8.

Outfielder Grady Espinosa did his best defensively to keep the Otters’ lead from ballooning further with an array of catches but said despite the loss, the team has to look forward.

“It’s just one game, that’s how you have to look at it,” Espinosa said, who also finished with one hit and an RBI. “It’s one loss, we can’t hang on to it too long. We just have to flush it and move on.”

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