SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Wichita State scored single runs in the fourth and fifth innings and a trio of pitchers made them stand up in a combined four-hit shutout of Cal Poly, 2-0, on Sunday before 1,405 inside Baggett Stadium.
The Shockers (11-8) salvaged one win in the weekend non-conference series — the Mustangs won Friday 5-4 in 13 innings and 3-0 Saturday — despite hitting just .170 and striking out 40 times over 31 innings.
Cal Poly, whose pitching staff gave up just three walks and 19 hits in three contests, had its four-game winning streak snapped, falling to 7-12. The Mustangs have won five of eight games at home following a season-opening 2-9 start on the road.
"We're playing much better in all facets of the game," said 15th-year Cal Poly head coach Larry Lee. "Our pitching was outstanding all weekend, with three walks, 19 hits and 40 strikeouts over 31 innings.
"We got three quality starts on the mound in the series and we were very effective out of the bullpen as well," Lee added, noting the staff's 1.45 ERA during the weekend.
After three scoreless innings, Wichita State broke through for a run in the fourth on a misplayed relay throw from the outfield. The Shockers added an insurance un in the fifth on designated hitter Ryan Klusener's RBI double down the left-field line.
Shut out for the sixth time this season, Cal Poly left seven runners on base.
The Mustangs had a runner at second with one out in the third inning and had runners at first and second with one out in the fifth. Catcher Nick Meyer doubled with one out in the sixth but was left stranded.
Cal Poly's four hits included two singles by right fielder Colby Barrick (pictured at left), lifting his average to .435. Wichita State mustered five hits, including a single and double by catcher Noah Croft.
Mustang sophomore right-hander Cam Schneider (1-1) (pictured above) allowed just one earned run and five hits over seven innings with no walks and five strikeouts, but was tagged with the loss.
The win went to senior right-hander Zach Lewis (1-1). He also went seven innings, giving up no runs and four hits with two walks and six strikeouts. Ben Hecht tossed a 1-2-3 ninth — three fly balls to the outfield — for his fourth save.
Cal Poly also took two of three games against Wichita State a year ago in Kansas.
"We're disappointed not to finish the weekend off on a positive note," said Lee. "We just have to continue to climb in the right direction."
The three-game series drew 4,186 fans.
Cal Poly wraps up the 12-game home stand with a four-game series against Nebraska starting Thursday night. Game times are 6 p.m. both Thursday and Friday and a 1 p.m. doubleheader Saturday.
The Huskers swept a three-game series at home against College of Charleston over the weekend to improve to 9-8 on the year.
Photos courtesy of Matt Aguirre