FULLERTON, Calif. — An eight-run sixth inning erased Nebraska's early lead and propelled No. 8 Cal State Fullerton to a 10-4 win Wednesday night.
The Huskers (6-13) were up 4-2 heading into the bottom of the sixth inning, but it all fell apart from there.
The Titans (18-3) brought 12 men to the plate and recorded six hits to break open their fourth and final game against NU this year. Fullerton won all four meetings, including Tuesday's 8-7 thriller in 11 innings.
A depleted NU bullpen couldn't hold off the Titans, who've won seven straight.
“We used a lot of our (pitchers Tuesday),” Nebraska coach Darin Erstad said on the Husker Sports Network. “Our lack of depth pretty much got exposed.”
The Huskers looked to be in good shape to begin Wednesday's game.
RBI groundouts in the first and third innings gave them a 2-0 lead. And after Fullerton answered with two runs in the third, sophomore Austin Darby helped put NU back on top 3-2 when he tripled and later scored in the fourth. Senior Chad Christensen's solo home run made it 4-2 in the fifth.
But the Huskers managed just two hits after that as Fullerton surged ahead.
“There's multiple games that we've been in and fought real hard, but got a little sideways in the sixth, seventh, eighth inning,” Erstad said.
The sixth was the disastrous frame for the Nebraska pitchers Wednesday.
Junior reliever Tyler King worked two scoreless innings before plunking the first two batters he faced in the sixth. Junior Zach Hirsch took over, but he gave up four hits while recording just one out.
Matt Chapman's two-run single tied the game at 4-4. Carlos Lopez, up next, made it 5-4 with a single to left field. By the time Chad Wallach scored on a Caleb Hawkins wild pitch, Fullerton had taken control, up 10-4.
“We're not there yet as a team. We're not ready to take that next step,” Erstad said. “The true belief of being able to get over that hump — there's only one way they're going to get that, and that's by playing these teams. We have to get through that.”
The Huskers, 2-6 on this extended road trip dating to March 8, will open Big Ten play Friday with a three-game series at Illinois.
Nebraska (6-13) .................. 101 110 000—4 6 0
Cal State Fullerton (18-3) .... 002 008 00x—10 9 0
W: Murray, 1-0. L: Hirsch, 1-2. 2B: NU, Edrington (1), Kalkowski (4); CSF, Chapman (3), Jefferies (3). 3B: NU, Darby (1); CSF, Wallach (1). HR: NU, Christensen (2).