Gators tame Wildcats in crucial victory

Andrew Breen (2), infielder for the SF State Gators baseball team, slides into home plate and is pronounced safe during a game against the Chico State Wildcats in which SF State won 6-2 in San Francisco, CA on Sunday, May 1, 2016. (Alex Kofman / Xpress)

Going up against the California Collegiate Athletic Association pitcher of the week, Chico State’s Dalton Erb, didn’t phase SF State, as the Gators pounded Erb in their 6-2 victory over the Wildcats Sunday.

Erb was solid through six innings, but center fielder Jake Faulkner put an end to that when he doubled over the left fielder’s head with two outs in the bottom of the seventh to start a rally.

It continued when second basemen Joe Chedid traded places with Faulkner, and the Gators took a 3-2 lead with an RBI double from third basemen Andrew Breen.

“I could not be more proud of this group of guys,” head coach Tony Schifano said. “They came out  with some clutch two-strike hits late in the game.”

Shortstop Bryce Brooks also contributed in the two-out rally, hitting his third triple of the season.

Gators’ starting pitcher Peter Reyes was dominant in what was likely his second to last start as a Gator. The senior went seven and two-thirds innings, gave up four hits and only one earned run.

“(Reyes) competes like a bulldog on the mound,” Schifano said. “He’ll give up a couple hits here and there, but he’ll never give in.”

Infielder for the SF State Gators mens baseball team, Bryce Brooks (39) slides back to third base during a game against the Chico State Wildcats in which SF State won 6-2 in San Francisco, CA on Sunday, May 1, 2016. (Alex Kofman / Xpress)

Infielder for the SF State Gators mens baseball team, Bryce Brooks (39) slides back to third base during a game against the Chico State Wildcats in which SF State won 6-2 in San Francisco, CA on Sunday, May 1, 2016. (Alex Kofman / Xpress)

Reyes’ managed only one strikeout, but was able to keep the ball down and let his defense work behind him.

“I figured they would get themselves out because they take a lot of big swings,” Reyes said. “I just had to throw strikes in order to get them to swing.”

Despite throwing 51 pitches yesterday, pitcher Brent Montgomery recorded his third-straight save. Striking out one and giving up only one hit in one and one-thirds innings work.

Breen said it was big to win the series finale, especially heading into the final series of the regular season.

“Being able to bounce back after a couple dog fights (in yesterday’s doubleheader), have a great outing from Reyes and have our bats come alive was huge in this win,” Breen said.

The Gators look to get back to .500 against the Cal State East Bay Pioneers Tuesday at 3 p.m. in Hayward.