Senior Mark Appel made his 2013 home debut at Sunken Diamond count with a three-hit, complete-game effort in a 3-1 nonconference baseball win Friday over Fresno State.
The Stanford ace struck out 11 and walked one while receiving a pair of runs from the Cardinal (3-2) offense in the bottom of the eighth to seal the victory.
Appel (1-1) and the Cardinal defense left four Fresno State (1-3) runners stranded during his time on the mound as only five Bulldog runners reached base on the evening.
The All-American retired 16 of the final 17 batters he faced, allowing only a seventh-inning Chris Mariscal single during that stretch.
Fresno State starter Will Munro went head-to-head with Appel for 7.1 frames before being pulled for Tyler Linehan (0-2), who was stuck with the loss after walking three and permitting a pair of earned runs.
Munro scattered seven hits, only one of which yielded a Cardinal run. That run came in the opening inning when Brian Ragira hustled home on Justin Ringo's two-out single to right. Ragira had doubled to left before Ringo's at-bat.
Ringo was one of three Cardinal players with a multi-hit outing. Menlo School grad Danny Diekroeger and Austin Slater shared the honor as Stanford out-hit the Bulldogs, 8-3.
Ringo started Stanford's decisive two-run rally in the eighth with a one-out single to center. Alex Blandino was walked and both runners advanced on a Slater groundout. Lonnie Kauppila drew a walk, as did pinch-hitter Brett Michael Doran. Doran's walk scored Ringo for the go-ahead run.
Blandino made it a 3-1 game when he scored from third on one of Garrett Mundell's two wild pitches.
Fresno State committed two errors but produced a pair of double plays while leaving nine Cardinal runners stranded.
The teams square off again Saturday at 1 p.m.
The 17th-ranked Stanford softball team dropped a 4-1 decision to Oklahoma State at the Mary Nutter Collegiate Classic in Cathedral City on Friday. The Cardinal fell to 11-3 overall, while the Cowgirls improve to 7-5.
Stanford senior pitcher Teagan Gerhart dropped to 5-2 in the circle. She had six strikeouts, but allowed four runs, three earned, on six hits. Oklahoma State's Kat Espinosa earned the win, moving to 3-3.
In the top of the third, senior centerfielder Sarah Hassman hit an infield single, beating out the throw to first. She then stole second to register her 87th career stolen base, passing former Cardinal Jessica Mendoza ('02) to become Stanford's career leader.
Oklahoma State captured the lead in the bottom of the fourth inning, plating four runs on five hits and capitalizing on a Cardinal throwing error by short stop Jenna Rich.
Stanford loaded the bases with two outs in the top of the fifth, but failed to take advantage of the situation and stranded all three runners.
The Cardinal again loaded the bases in the sixth inning, this time with no outs. Sophomore Cassandra Roulund led off with a double to left centerfield. She scored on a fielder's choice by designated player Alyssa Lombardo to record the lone run for Stanford.
Earlier in the day, Stanford opened the tournament with a 6-0 win over Georgia. Freshman pitcher Kelsey Stevens notched her fourth shutout of the year, improving to 6-1. She had three strikeouts and gave up four hits.
Stanford scored its first run in the top of the second inning. A single by senior Tegan Schmidt and a throwing error that allowed freshman Kayla Bonstrom to score from second. The Cardinal broke the game open in the top of the fifth, scoring five runs.
Track and field
Kori Carter and Carissa Levingston ran one-two in the women's 200 meters as Stanford opened defense of its Mountain Pacific Sports Federation indoor women's track and field title on Friday in Seattle, Wash.
Running in her first 200 of the season, Carter won in 23.64 seconds, the third-fastest indoor time in Stanford history and the fastest time the junior has ever run at that distance -- indoors or outdoors.
After the first day of the two-day meet, the Stanford women have 34 points and are second only to UCLA (45.5) in the team standings after seven events.
The Stanford men stand fourth with 26.5 points and trail Arizona State (55.5), California (32), and Washington State (28) after six events.
Carter, who will defend her title in the 60-meter hurdles on Saturday, had to beat the 24.24 of Levingston to win. Levingston, the 2010 runner-up, came out of an earlier heat to post the fastest time going into Carter's race, in the 11th and final section.
Carter, last year's 200 runner-up, accelerated off the turn of the 307-meter flat Dempsey Indoor track and extended her lead to the finish line.
"The plan for both was to get out hard and maintain for 150. Stay strong, and pump your arms all the way through," Stanford sprints and hurdles coach Jody Stewart said. "I was confident Kori would do well. She's very talented, she works hard, is consistent, and she executes.
For the senior Levingston, an NCAA outdoor qualifier in the 100 as a freshman, the past two seasons have been marred by injuries. But she is regaining her form and her performance showed it.
"This was a big moment for her," Stewart said. "I'm really proud of her."
The Cardinal was boosted by second-place finishes by Kathy Kroeger in the women's 5,000, Erik Olson in the men's 5,000, and the women's distance medley relay team.
Kroeger, a seven-time All-American and the reigning Pac-12 cross country champion, was running her first race of the indoor season. In a dogfight with Washington's Megan Goethals and Arizona's Jen Bergman, Kroeger burst into the lead at the one-mile mark and reeled off a series of 76-second laps before Goethals took the lead with 600 to go.
Bergman swung wide on the penultimate lap, but Goethals wouldn't surrender. And at the gun, Kroeger was next to attempt a decisive move, but also was stymied. Goethals won going away in 15:58.62 and Kroeger was second in 16:00.29.
In the men's 5,000, Stanford had the advantage of five runners in the field, allowing the Cardinal to control most of the race. Stanford's Tyler Valdes acted as a rabbit for the first few laps before giving way to Olson, who was followed closely by twins Joe and Jim Rosa.
Those positions largely held until Washington State's Drew Jordan passed Olson on the field lap to win in 13:54.35 to 13:55.66. Joe Rosa was fifth in 13:58.74 and Jim Rosa was sixth in 13:59.76 both personal records for the Cardinal sophomores.
In the women's DMR, Cami Chapus (1,200), Kala Stepter (400) and Claudia Saunders (800) had Stanford in third place at the final handoff to Emilie Amaro. On the final leg -- of 1,600 meters -- Amaro pushed into second, but Washington's Christine Babcock opened a huge gap on the rest of the field, allowing the Huskies to win in 11:08.09 to Stanford's 11:22.17.
In the men's DMR, Marco Bertolotti, Loren Pilorin, and Justin Brinkley put Stanford into the lead going into Kenny Krotzer's anchor leg, but four teams jockeyed for position throughout the final laps before UCLA won in 9:40.18, with Stanford finishing fourth in 9:43.98.
Among other top individual performances, Spencer Chase was fourth in the men's 200 (21.64), and Garrett Starkey was seventh and Dalton Duvio 10th in the men's pole vault, both at 16-4.
Stanford's women hope to score big in the 60 hurdles with Carter and Katie Nelms on Saturday. They also are looking for scoring from freshman Amy Weissenbach in the 800, Jessica Tonn in the 3,000, and Kristyn Williams in the 400 among others as the Cardinal seeks its seventh MPSF indoor team title.
The men will look to high jumper Jules Sharpe, shot putter Geoffrey Tabor, and milers Michael Atchoo and Tyler Stutzman for its biggest scoring opportunities.