SANTA CLARITA, Calif. -- Brian Grijalva pitched 7 solid innings and Peter Krumeich hit a grand slam and more than doubled his number of RBIs this season as he drove in 5 runs leading The Master’s to an 8-3 win over Azusa Pacific, Wednesday afternoon at Reese Field.
Grijalva, who came into the game with an ERA hovering around 10, limited the Cougars to 3 solo home runs in 7 innings of work as he picked up his second win of the season. Meanwhile, Krumeich did his damage at the plate busting the game open in the sixth inning by blasting a grand slam off of reliever Christian Gagne that gave the Mustangs an 8-2 lead.
Azusa Pacific’s Scott Hodsdon stayed hot at the plate as he belted a pair of homers giving him 6 on the season. He extends his hitting streak to 8 straight games. Meanwhile, Guy McDowell took the loss for just the second time this year after allowing 3 runs in 4.1 innings.
The Cougars jumped out in front first when Hodsdon homered to lead off the fourth inning for a 1-0 lead. The Mustangs stormed back in the fifth against McDowell. They loaded the bases with 1 out against the Azusa Pacific right hander and Krumeich punched a ball into left field to bring home a run that tied the game at 1-1. With the bases still loaded, McDowell walked Zane Jensen to force home a run. Garrett Lebsock came in from the bullpen and retired Tom Barrington on a sacrifice fly that made it 3-1 Mustangs. Lebsock then induced Phil Seston into hitting a ground ball that forced out the lead runner to end the threat.
In the sixth, Azusa Pacific got a run back as Hodsdon crushed a ball over the left field wall to narrow the deficit to 3-2.
But the Mustangs made sure that was as close as it got against the Cougar bullpen. After loading the bases against Lebsock, he was replaced by Gagne who issued a walk to Justin Franco that brought home a run. Krumeich then followed with his slam to right field. It was his third homer of the season giving him 5 RBIs in the game and 9 on the season.
Nick Beghtol connected in the seventh inning on a solo shot to make it an 8-3 game but Azusa Pacific would not get any closer. It was his fourth roundtripper of the season.
The loss extends the Cougars’ (17-16, 10-11) losing streak to 5 games and drops them to just 1 game over .500 for the first time since Feb. 3 when they were 2-1. They will look to bounce back on Thursday when they host The Master’s at 5:30 p.m.