Bill Kernen has coached college baseball far too long to get worked up over one bad game.
That's why the 65-year-old architect of the Cal State Baseball program wasn't too down on his team after it took a 19-7 battering at the hands of New Mexico State on Sunday at Harte Field.
The Aggies spoiled the final home game of Kernen's CSUB coaching career, pulling out to a 14-0 lead before coasting to a comfortable victory.
"This is only the second time we've been soundly beaten like this," Kernen said. "...This happens to everybody and basically all you can do is just throw it away and get ready for the next one."
Kristopher Koerper helped New Mexico State avoid losing all three games of the Western Athletic Conference weekend series to the 'Runners, by smacking six hits and driving in seven runs, both career highs.
The Aggies' 19 runs scored and 24 hits were the most allowed in a game by CSUB this season.
New Mexico State wasted little time jumping all over 'Runners starting pitcher Austin Davis.
The hard-throwing lefthander surrendered nine runs, all of them earned, before being pulled after only 2-2/3 innings.
CSUB's bullpen didn't fare much better. Davis and five relievers allowed 33 New Mexico State batters to reach base safely, including 12 of 17 to start the game.
The Aggies loaded the bases five straight innings (the second through the sixth).
"As soon as you start thinking that you're pretty good and you're going good ... baseball steps up and knocks you back down," Kernen said. "... It's tough to sweep somebody."
New Mexico State starting pitcher Robert Kraft (1-3) pitched 5-2/3 solid innings to earn the win.
The junior lefthander allowed one run on five hits and a walk before being lifted after throwing 62 pitches.
Despite the lopsided final score there were bright spots for CSUB.
Logan Trowbridge came off the bench to replace injured starting catcher Ross Hough and had two hits.
Max Carter, not normally an outfielder, made a spectacular leaping catch in left field to rob the Aggies of an extra base hit in the eighth inning.
And Mylz Jones extended his hitting streak to 15 games, the third longest in 'Runners' history, with a line-drive single in the ninth.
Jones already holds the CSUB record for longest hitting streak. The slick fielding sophomore third baseman had a hit in 21 straight games a year ago.
The 'Runners finished with 10 hits and four walks. However, it took the CSUB lineup a while to get going.
Down 14-1 and on the verge of having the game cut short due to the 10-run rule, Bakersfield rallied to score six runs in the seventh inning.
But New Mexico State, powered by Koerper, answered back with one run in the eighth and four more in the ninth.
The 6-foot-4, 240-pound lefty had two doubles and the game's only home run, an eighth-inning solo shot, among his six hits.
Koerper, who used a wooden bat the entire game, drove in at least one run during five of his seven at bats.
"I felt really comfortable at the plate," Koerper said. "I swung a wood bat for the first time all season. I feel more comfortable swinging a wood bat more than I do a metal bat and I think that's what it came down to, just feeling comfortable at the plate ... The hits fell. It was good."
For Kernen, who announced his retirement earlier in the week, Sunday's game marked the end of his time in the Hardt Field home dugout.
"It's odd because I haven't really been thinking about that," he said. "I've just been focusing on what's going on. I think maybe that will be something that will hit me later."
Kernen said he won't give much thought to all of the wins and losses.
"Well the thing I'll remember the most won't be the games," Kernen said. "... What you remember is the young guys you were able to see grow up, develop and have families whether they went on to play pro baseball or not."