NORTHRIDGE, Calif. --- Jerry McClanahan drove in the go-ahead and insurance runs in UC Irvine's 5-3 win over Cal State Northridge Friday at Matador Field.
UCI was facing a 3-1 deficit in the sixth when D.J. Crumlich and Tommy Reyes hit consecutive singles for the first time against starter Alex Murren. Jordan Fox's hit through the right side would drive in Crumlich and push Reyes to third, trimming the Matador lead to one. Connor Spencer flew out to center for the run-scoring sacrifice and following a steal by Fox, McClanahan, who was 2 for 4 on the day, drove in his first run with a two-out RBI single, giving UCI a 4-3 lead.
The catcher then delivered again in the eighth with a bunt on the suicide squeeze that fell for a single and plated Spencer, who had singled and taken third on a double by Christian Ramirez.
The Matadors threatened in the ninth with a pair of one-out singles against closer Race Parmenter but the right-hander induced a pair of ground-ball outs to end the game and pick up his eighth save.
Spencer gave UCI a 1-0 lead in the first on a sacrifice fly to score Reyes but the Matadors strung together consecutive one-out singles against Andrew Thurman in the second for Kyle Attl, who tied the game with a run-scoring double to left. Michael Livingston followed with a clean single to center to drive in Todd Eskelin and Ryan Raslowsky's grounder to second would score Attl for the 3-1 lead.
That would be all as Thurman shut out the Matadors over the next five innings before handing the ball off to Jimmy Litchfield, who pitched a perfect eighth inning. Thurman improved to 7-2 after holding CSUN to three runs on nine hits while striking out three.
Muren pitched eight innings, giving up five runs on nine hits and fell to 5-6 with the loss. Eskelin and Attl paced the Matadors with three hits apiece.
Spencer drove in two runs on one hit while Reyes was 2 for 5 with two runs scored for UCI.
The series continues Saturday at 1:00 p.m.