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WCC Baseball Recaps

Feb. 22, 2008

Saint Mary's - 14
Towson - 3

Moraga, CA - The Saint Mary's baseball team opened up their season today in a rainy victory over the Towson Tigers, by a score of 14-3 at Louis Guisto Field. Strong pitching kept the Tigers bats in check most of the afternoon, while the Gael hitters racked up 14 runs on 16 hits. At the end of the day SMC's record stands at 1-0 overall, while the Tigers fall to 0-1.

Saint Mary's starter Brandon Berl (1-0) threw six impressive innings, allowing only three earned runs on five hits while striking out nine in his first start of the new season. Redshirt freshman Justin Kuks looked equally as impressive coming in for the final three innings giving up no hits and striking out five.

On the offensive side senior Geoff Byrns started off the scoring, when he scored on a sac fly from sophomore Scott Schneider to go up one to nothing in the bottom of the second. On the day Byrns went 2-for-2 with two doubles and a run scored in his debut with the Gaels.

Towson's pitchers had a rough day, as starter junior Josh Squatrito (0-1) only able to complete three innings while giving up five hits four earned runs and hitting three SMC batters. On the day the Tigers used five pitchers all of whom had a tough time trying to silence the SMC bats.

Saint Mary's also saw strong performances at the plate from the likes of sophomore standout Anthony Aliotti, sophomore Alex Jensen, and junior Cory Miller. Aliotti went 2-for-4 with an RBI and a run scored, Jensen 2-for-3 and added an RBI, while Miller went 3-for-5 with a double, two RBI and two runs scored, Miller also added a stolen base as well.

While Towson's bats were quiet for most of the day, only managing five hits, senior first baseman Greg Furmanek gave the Tiger fans a brief moment of hope hitting a long home run off Berl to deep right centerfield to make the score 4 - 2 in the top of the fourth. The homerun by Furmanek was his first and the only one hit in the game.

Aside from Kuks and Byrns, a few other notable Gaels also made their debuts today including sophomore Connor Larkin and freshman Justin Fazio.

After SMC scored four runs in the second, Towson came back to score two in the top of the fourth. The Gaels responded by scoring two runs in the fourth, fifth, and sixth innings, and capped off their day by scoring four in the seventh.

The Gaels and Towson meet up again tomorrow for a double header at Louis Guisto Field, with the first game slated to start at 10:00 AM.

Santa Clara - 12
Utah Valley - 1

Santa Clara - 7
Utah Valley - 2

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - The Santa Clara baseball team opened the 2008 season with back-to-back wins against Utah Valley on Friday at Stephen Schott Stadium.

Weather permitting, the Broncos (2-0) will play another doubleheader on Saturday against the Wildcats of Kansas State. First pitch is scheduled for Noon at Schott Stadium

Sophomore Nate Garcia earned the first win of the day for SCU as the Broncos stormed to a 12-1 finish. Garcia struckout seven batters in 7.2 innings pitched. Daniel DeMarco and Thain Simon, who got his first taste of collegiate action, finished the pitching duties for Santa Clara. Evan LeBlanc knocked out a three-run home run in the latter half of the game to continue to distance the Broncos from the Wolverines. Brady Fuerst tallied three runs, while Tommy Medica and LeBlanc had two runs apiece.

The Broncos picked up right where they left off in the start of the second game, quickly making the score 2-0. The next five innings saw no changes to the score, as sophomore Steve Kalush pitched a no-hitter for the first six innings. Kalush registered 13 strikeouts in 6.2 innings pitched.

Yet, the Wolverines tied things up in the top of the seventh inning as both Ryan Jones and Jace Brinkerhoff scored for Utah Valley.

The Broncos responded with a five run effort in the bottom of the eighth inning to take back control of the scoreboard and post win number two. Alex Rivers, who finished out the second game for the Broncos, was awarded his first win of the season.

Lefthanded pitchers Donald Brandt and Matt Wickswat are scheduled to pitch for Santa Clara in Saturday's doubleheader

Oklahoma State - 6
Gonzaga - 1

STILLWATER, Okla. - The Gonzaga University baseball team opened the 2008 season with a 6-1 loss to No. 27 Oklahoma State University Friday at Reynolds Stadium in Stillwater, Okla.

The Bulldogs'(0-1) starter Brandon Harmon (1-0) suffered the loss as the senior pitched five innings, allowing five runs, four earned, on seven hits and one walk while striking out six. Jeremy Stumetz and Cody Martin each saw time on the mound for the Zags, with Martin throwing two innings of no-hit ball in his collegiate debut. Earning the win for the Cowboys (1-0) was Andrew Oliver (1-0), who allowed on run on two hits during five innings of work.

Oklahoma State jumped out to an early 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first inning thanks to a sacrifice fly to centerfield by Jordy Mercer to drive in Michael Dabbs. Dabbs reached base on a walk before advancing to second on a single by Matt Hauge and earning third on a Gonzaga fielding error.

The Zags knotted the score at one with a run in the top of the third. Bryan Winston led off the inning drawing a walk and reached second on a single through the right side by Evan Wells. Winston and Wells then each advanced base on a balk to give the Bulldogs runners on second and third. With one out, the inning closed with a run-scoring double play. Jason Chatwood hit a sacrifice fly to centerfield to plate Winston, but Wells was called out on the play.

The Cowboys scored the eventual game winning run in the fourth frame thanks to a one-run single to right by Donnie Webb.

Oklahoma State extended its lead to 5-1, scoring three runs in the fifth inning as the Cowboys combined three hits, including a two-run double by Hague, to score three runs. The Cowboys went on to add an insurance run in the sixth with an unearned run scored by Webb. Webb, who reached on an error, was scored on a single through the infield by Dabbs.

Gonzaga threatened to narrow the score in the bottom of the eighth but were unable to score, leaving the bases loaded to end the inning.

The Bulldogs and Cowboys will resume the four-game series Saturday with a doubleheader scheduled for 11 a.m. PST. Gonzaga's Cory Powell, who is returning from a red shirt season, is expected to take the mound in the opening contest of the twin bill, with Matt Fields expected to get the starting nod for the Zags' in game two.

Sacramento State - 12
Loyola Marymount - 7

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - Loyola Marymount (0-1) fell on the road in its 2008 season opener, 12-7, to Sacramento State (1-0) on a rainy Friday at Sac State's Hornet Field. The Lions were not at a loss for run production, plating seven runs on seven hits. Unfortunately for LMU, timely Hornet hitting and two home runs spelled defeat for the crimson and navy.

Senior A.J. LaMonda led the Lion offense on the day, finishing two-for-three with two runs scored. Junior Kyle Spraker, a transfer from Cal, collected his first home run as a Lion, blasting a solo-shot in the third inning to put the Lions on the board for the first time this season.

Freshman Andrew Irvine had a strong debut for LMU, turning in a sound defensive effort in right field and collecting a two-RBI double in the fourth and a sacrifice fly in the sixth. Sophomore Ryan Wheeler, the Lions' starting third baseman on Friday, contributed the final two RBI on the day, turning-in a RBI in the fourth and a RBI-double in the sixth.

Sacramento State got offensive support from three major contributors, Wallace Watch List members, Gabe Jacobo and Ryan Blair, and first baseman Wes Oberlin. Blair led all hitters with four RBI and three hits, including a double and his first homer of the season, a two-run shot in the third inning. Not to be outdone, Oberlein preceded the shot with a three-run homer of his own in the six-run Hornet third. Jacobo finished the day three-for-four with a double, two RBI, a run scored and a walk.

Lion starter, Andy Beal, lasted four innings in his first outing of 2008 before being tagged with the loss. The senior surrendered nine runs (six earned) on 10 hits and two walks while striking out one batter. Sophomore Jeremy Burrell entered in the fifth inning to relieve Beal, tossing an inning and allowing three runs on four walks before giving way to junior Ernie Cho. Cho proved effective out of the bullpen, turning in two scoreless innings while striking out three batters. Will Dugoni, one of a handful of utility-type players on the Lion roster this season, finished the game on the hill for LMU after pitching one inning and surrendering just one hit and striking out one batter.

Sac State's starter, Jose Ramirez, contributed four innings and allowed four runs on five hits and two walks while striking out four hitters. Alvaro Orozco tossed the next two innings for the Hornets, giving up three runs (one earned) over the span. Brian Smith, the game's winning pitcher, pitched two scoreless frames before Jeff Roth retired the side in order in the ninth, two by way of strikeout.

After a 1-2-3 top of the first for the Lions, Sac State wasted no time posting its first run of the 2008 campaign. Blair singled to start the ball rolling, before a slow-rolling groundout moved him to second. David Flores took advantage of the RBI opportunity, doubling home the run and handing Sac State the early 1-0 advantage.

LMU put runners at first and second in the second inning, but was unable to plate a run in the frame. With two out in the bottom of the inning, Sacramento State mounted a two-out rally. Taylor Watanabe singled to right field to set the table for Blair to contribute his first big blow on the day. A double into the gap sent Watanabe racing around third base with a throw coming to the plate from left field. Unfortunately for the Lions, the relay from Spraker at shortstop sailed high over Sean Dovel's head at home. Beal settled down to retire the next hitter and strand Blair at third base, but the damage had already been done in the inning.

Spraker's solo-home run cut the lead to 2-1 in the top of the third before Sac State answered for six runs in the bottom of the frame. Jacobo's RBI-double started the scoring rally for the Hornets before Oberlin connected on his three-run homer to plate the second, third and fourth runs in the inning. Beal retired the next two hitters in order before walking Watanabe to extend the inning. Blair made the most of the opportunity, sending a pitch over the wall in right field to cap the Hornet scoring run.

LMU managed to cut the lead to 8-4 in the top of the fourth inning, plating three runs in the frame. Andy Preston led the inning off right, singling back up the middle, before Ollie Enos walked to put runners at first and second. On the ensuing play, LaMonda was hit by a pitch to load the bases for Irvine. The freshman right-handed hitter got a pitch to hit and lifted a shallow fly ball down the right field line that fell fair and went for a two-RBI double. Wheeler followed with his first RBI of the game, grounding a ball to first base and plating LaMonda from third.

The Hornets refused to surrender any momentum, adding another run in the bottom of the fourth. Flores led things off with a double before a Jacobo single put runners at the corners with no outs. On the ensuing play, Tim Wheeler traded an out for a run when he hit a ground ball to Jonathan Johnson at second base that scored the runner from third.

Following a scoreless top of the fifth for LMU, the Hornets plated two more runs in the bottom of the frame. With Burrell on the hill, back-to-back walks set the table for the runs in the inning. A Watanabe sacrifice bunt moved the runners to second and third before a Blair sacrifice fly plated the first Sac State run of the inning. Back-to-back hit batsmen loaded the bases once again for the Hornets before another walk allowed the runner from third to scamper home safely.

The Lions responded in the top of the sixth, cutting the lead to 11-7 with their final three runs of the game. Enos reached on an error to start the inning before moving to third on a LaMonda double into the left-centerfield gap. Irvine cashed in on yet another RBI opportunity, lifting a deep fly ball to right field that proved deep enough to score Enos and move LaMonda to third. On the ensuing play, Wheeler connected on a RBI-double to plate the second LMU run of the frame. Spraker hit a ground ball one batter later, resulting in Flores' second error of the game at third base and the final LMU run of the game.

Sac State responded in the bottom of the sixth, scoring its 12th and final run on the rain-filled day. Burrell walked Oberlin to start the inning before being replaced by Cho with a 1-1 count to Jeff Hannah. Following a wild pitch that moved Oberlin to second, Cho recorded back-to-back strikeouts to collect the first two outs of the frame. Not letting the Lions off the hook, Watanabe singled on the ensuing play to score Oberlin and complete the scoring for the day.

Neither team managed to mount any further offense over the next three innings of play, resulting in a 12-7 Sac State victory over LMU. The Lions and Hornets will continue their four-game weekend series with a double-header tomorrow starting at 11 a.m. Weather permitting, both games can be seen on Gametracker and heard on Lion's Audio Network. Just click the links on the side of the schedule on the baseball page at www.lmulions.com.

BYU - 4 (11)
Portland - 2

PORTLAND, Ore. --- The BYU Cougars scored twice in the top of the 11th inning and held on for a 4-2 win over the Portland Pilots in a non-conference baseball game on a sunny afternoon at Joe Etzel Field. It's the season-opener for both teams.

The Pilots were held to just three hits on the day.

Tied at 2-2 in the top of the 11th, Portland (0-1) pitcher Matthew Lange hit BYU's lead-off hitter, Sean McNaughton. After stealing second, McNaughton advanced to third on a sacrifice bunt by Steve Parker. Freshman pitcher Zach Varce, who relieved Lange, then picked up the huge strikeout, sitting down Kasey Ko.

Varce wasn't so fortunate the following hitter as Jonathan Cluff hit an RBI double that was just out of the reach of left fielder Austin Pearce. Bryce Ayoso then brought home Cluff with a single to left, before Varce was able to get out of the inning.

In the bottom half of the 11th, BYU (1-0) reliever Brandon Michon issued a one-out walk to junior Cort Carpenter, but was able to get the next two outs to pick up the save.

Lange (0-1) was saddled with the loss, while Blake Torgerson (1-0) pitched two scoreless innings to get the win.

Portland starter David Gruener, a senior, picked up the no decision after pitching nine innings of three-hit ball. Gruener gave up just two earned runs, while striking out six. He didn't walk a BYU batter.

BYU starter Jake Wortham was almost just as effective as Gruener. Wortham allowed two runs on two hits in eight innings of work. He struck out three and walked four.

Neither team was able to put much offense together in the first several innings. The Cougars finally got on the scoreboard with a run in the fourth, before adding another run in the fifth.

Down two in the bottom of the fifth, freshman Kevin Armijo picked up Portland's first hit of the game with a single to right-center field. Senior Danny Meier, who reached base after getting drilled by a pitch, advanced to third on the hit. Sophomore Rocky Gale followed Armijo with double to deep left field that plated Meier and sent Armijo to third.

On the very next pitch, sophomore C.J. Cullen laid down a perfectly-placed bunt to score Armijo on the suicide squeeze. Torgerson then induced an inning-ending ground out from freshman Riley Henricks.

Henricks picked up Portland's third hit with single up the middle in the 10th inning.

BYU didn't commit an error on the afternoon, while the Pilots were charged with one.

The Pilots and Cougars wrap-up their three-game series with a double-header on Saturday at Joe Etzel Field. The first game is scheduled to start at 11:00 a.m.

San Diego State - 11
San Diego - 2

SAN DIEGO, Calif. - The fifth-ranked University of San Diego baseball team (0-1) was upset by cross-town rival San Diego State University (1-0) in the season opener for both teams, 11-2, at SDSU's Tony Gwynn Stadium Friday evening.

The Toreros broke open the scoreless contest in the top of the third inning scoring two runs on two hits. Kevin Hansen got things rolling with a stand-up double to lead off the inning. Kevin Muno then moved Hansen to third on a perfectly placed bunt, as he reached first safely by out running the throw. Ryan Davis then got the first USD RBI of the season as he laid down a sacrificed bunt that pushed Hansen across, moved Muno to second and he safely reached first base. Sean Nicol then moved each runner up one base on a sacrifice bunt and the final USD run came across when the Toreros had a double steal as Muno had stole home and Davis stole third, to give USD a 2-0 lead.

The Aztecs then responded in their half of the inning as Nick Romero hit a three-run homer over the left field fence to give SDSU a 3-2 lead. Brandon Glover then hit a run-scoring triple to push the Aztecs lead to two at 4-2.

SDSU then added to their lead in the bottom of the fifth inning as Brett Tanos and Troy Hanzawa hit back-to-back RBI singles to give San Diego State a 6-2 lead.

SDSU then put the game out of reach in the bottom of the seventh inning scoring five runs on five hits.

Brian Matusz (0-1) was saddled with the loss for the Toreros, as he allowed six runs on eight hits in 4.2 innings of work. Stephen Strasburg (1-0) picks up the win for the Aztecs as he allowed two runs on five hits in 8.0 innings of work.

The Toreros will resume their season-opening series with the Aztecs on Saturday with a double-header. The first game with be at USD's Cunningham Stadium at 1 p.m. and the night cap will be at Tony Gwynn Stadium at 7 p.m.

Hawai'i - 10
San Francisco - 4

Honolulu, HI - San Francisco took a 3-2 lead in the second, but couldn't hold out as it fell to Hawaii 10-4 on Friday in the season opener. The Dons (0-1) only managed four hits in the contest, compared to the Rainbow's (3-1) 17.

Hawaii plated one in the bottom of the first, but the Dons took a quick lead with three runs in the top of the second. Senior Mitchell Bialosky walked to start the inning and two outs later, advanced to second on senior outfielder Kyle Morgan's single up the middle. Sophomore catcher Ryan Lipkin walked to load the bases before sophomore center fielder Bobby Ethel tripled down the right field line to clear them.

The `Bows put up two more over the next two innings, and the Dons tied it up in the fifth. With one out, senior second baseman Joey Railey walked and advanced to third when senior shortstop Tavo Hall reached base on an error by Rainbows' sophomore first baseman, Kevin Macdonald. Railey then scored on a wild pitch from Hawaii's starter, junior right-hander Matt Daly (1-0).

Hawaii would score six over the next four innings to seal the win.

Bialosky (0-1) started on the mound for the Dons, allowing five earned runs off 10 hits with two strikeouts and two walks in 4.1 innings. Freshman left-hander Garrett Luippold allowed four earned runs off four hits in 2.2 innings of relief and freshman right-hander Jonathan Abramson gave up the final earned run off three hits in 1.0 inning of work.

Railey led the Dons with two hits, two walks and a run scored. Ethel had one hit and three RBI. Morgan added a hit and a run scored.

For the Rainbows, Daly earned the win with six solid innings, giving up the Dons four runs (all earned) off two hits and four walks. Daly added eight strikeouts on the night. Senior outfielder Evan Zimmy led at the plate with a 4-for-4 night, two RBI and a run scored.

USF and Hawaii play a double-header tomorrow, with game one slated to start at 3:00 PM pacific.

Waves Season Opener Postponed

MALIBU, Calif. - The Pepperdine baseball team's 2008 season opener against Wake Forest on Friday, Feb. 22 was postponed due to rain. The teams will square off in doubleheaders beginning Saturday, Feb. 23 at 10:30 a.m. and Sunday, Feb. 24 at 10:30 a.m. at Eddy D. Field Stadium.

The game was initially postponed as heavy rains fell at 2 p.m., the scheduled start time. After a one-hour delay, another storm affected the Malibu area, postponing the game until Saturday. Brett Hunter (Moorpark, Calif./Moorpark HS) was Pepperdine's scheduled starter, while Ben Hunter was set to toe the rubber for Wake Forest.