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WCC Baseball Recaps

March 17, 2007

Gonzaga - 9
Rider - 4

SPOKANE, Wash. - The Gonzaga University posted five runs in the bottom of the eighth inning to come back from behind and down Rider University 9-4 Saturday at Patterson Baseball Complex and Washington Trust Field. Gonzaga has now won four games in a row, including posting a perfect 3-0 record at the new home of the Bulldogs.

With the win, Gonzaga improves to 14-10 overall for the season. Rider falls to 2-10 with the loss. The win also marked the first series sweep of the season for the Bulldogs, who defeated the Broncos 9-4 on Thursday and 13-3 Friday.

CJ McClure (3-0) earned the win in relief by being the pitcher of record when the Zags took the lead. McClure threw 1.0 inning, allowing one run on one hit and a walk. Clayton Mortensen started the game for Gonzaga, throwing 7.0 innings, allowing three runs, one earned, on six hits while striking out six. Taking the loss for Rider was James Hayes, throwing 1.0 inning allowing four runs, one earned on three hits.

The Zags posted the first runs of the game in the bottom of the third inning to jump out to a 2-0 lead. Bryan Winston and Darin Holcomb each hit run scoring singles to drive home Aaron McGuinness and Michael Rhodes.

Rider answered with a run in the top of the fourth when Sean Olson hit a sacrifice fly to score David Hayes, who reached on walk before advancing on a passed ball and wild pitch.

The Broncs took a 3-2 lead in the fifth frame. Jeff Reynolds and Eric Woodrow opened the inning with a double and single to put runners on the corners. Adam Tussey then grounded out that scored Reynolds. Woodrow then scored on a Gonzaga fielding error.

Gonzaga regained the lead in the seventh inning thanks to run-scoring hits by Holcomb and Ryan Wiegand. Holcomb smacked a double to deep left field that plated Winston for the 3-3 tying run. The Zags posted the go-ahead run thanks to a single by Wiegand that drove home Holcomb.

Rider knotted the game 4-4 in the top of the eighth with a run-scoring single to right by D. Hayes.

The Zags sealed the victory with five runs in the bottom of the eighth to finalize the score 9-4. Gonzaga pieced together three Rider errors and hits by Wiegand, Dustin Colclough, and Winston to give GU five run advantage.

For the weekend, the Bulldogs were led by Winston, Holcomb and Colclough, all who hit over .500. Winston led all Zags with a .636 average, going 7-for-11 with a double, four runs batted in and seven runs scored. Holcomb and Colclough both hit at a .500 clip. Holcomb went 7-for-14, scoring three runs and driving home five. Colclough posted a 1.000 slugging percentage driving home seven runs on six hits, including two home runs.

The Bulldogs will take the field again Tuesday when they host in-state rival Washington State University. The game is scheduled for a 3 p.m. first pitch. The game time is different from what was originally scheduled. The game was originally slated to be played at 6:30 p.m. but due to an delay in the installation of the lights at Patterson Baseball Complex and Washington Trust Field, the game was switched to an afternoon first pitch.

SCHEDULE NOTE, TIME CHANGES: Due the a delay in the installation of the lights at Patterson Baseball Complex and Washington Trust Field, the game time of six home games on the Gonzaga University baseball team's schedule have been changed. The games on March 20, March 21, March 23, March 27, March 30 and April 17 have been changed to a 3 p.m. first pitch. All six games were originally scheduled for 6:30 p.m. The games on April 20 and May 4, also scheduled for 6:30 p.m., will remain at the originally scheduled time. April 20 against Saint Mary's College will mark the first night game held at the new facility, as well as serve as the Dedication Game for Patterson Baseball Complex and Washington Trust Field, with the dedication ceremonies occurring prior to first pitch.

Pepperdine - 12
Minnesota - 3

Malibu, Calif. - Junior center fielder Adrian Ortiz equaled career-highs with four hits and three runs scored and freshman catcher Travis Tartamella clubbed his first career home run to lead No. 8 Pepperdine to a 12-3 series-clinching victory over Minnesota Saturday afternoon at Eddy D. Field Stadium.

Sophomore All-American Brett Hunter (4-1) was the beneficiary of the Waves' 16-hit attack as he pitched seven scoreless innings, allowed four hits, walked one and struck out six to help Pepperdine improve to 16-7 and move a season-high 11 games over the .500 mark.

Minnesota suffered its second straight loss and fell to 10-5.

Ortiz ignited the Waves' offense early as he opened the bottom of the first inning with an infield single, stole second and scored on an RBI single up the middle by junior shortstop Danny Worth.

Hunter and Minnesota starter Gary Perinar (0-2) were locked in a one-run game until the fifth when Ortiz once again sparked the Waves' offense. The Pepperdine center fielder opened the frame with a single through the left side, moved to second on a base hit by Worth and scored on sophomore designated hitter Eric Thames' single into right field.

Worth scored the second run of the inning on a sacrifice fly by junior right fielder Donald Brown. The Waves, who then loaded the bases when Chase d'Arnaud reached on an error and Ryan Heroy walked, scored the third run of the inning when Denny Duron was hit by a pitch that forced in a run. d'Arnaud then scored on a wild pitch to make it 5-0.

Pepperdine added three runs in the sixth to build an 8-0 lead before Minnesota took advantage of three walks by freshman left-handed reliever Jonathan Harmston to score three times in the top of the eighth and cut the deficit to 8-3.

The Waves answered with four runs in the bottom half of the inning, with the big blow being a two-out, three-run home run over the left field fence by Tartamella.

Hunter's seven innings pitched equaled his career-high and improved his season record at home to 3-0 and lowered his ERA to 1.08 in four starts while throwing 25.0 innings.

Pepperdine will go for the series sweep on Sunday when it hosts Minnesota beginning at 11 a.m.

Saint Mary's - 9
Southern Utah - 4

Saint Mary's - 4
Southern Utah - 3

Moraga, CA - The Saint Mary's baseball team moved its unbeaten streak to 13 straight with two more wins Saturday afternoon. The Gaels swept the Thunderbirds in a doubleheader by the scores of 9-4 and 4-3. With the two victories the Gaels improve to 15-8-1 overall.

Game 1

The Gaels plated four runs in the first three frames and added two in the sixth and three in the eighth to run away from Southern Utah.

Freshman Brandon Berl improved to 2-2 on the season after allowing three earned in seven innings. The newcomer fanned 10 and only walked one en route to the win.

Junior J.P. Musgrove provided the punch for SMC with a career-high five RBI. Musgrove batted 3-for-4 with a run scored. Junior Ian Gordon batted 3-for-4 as well with three runs scored and a RBI.

Joel Staples and Eric Cattoni tallied the other RBI for the Gaels. Staples batted 1-for-4 while Cattoni batted 1-for-5.

Alex Jensen pitched the rest of the way for the Gaels. The junior college transfer allowed one run and struck out one in two innings.

Mac Nelson was tagged with the loss after allowing five earned in seven innings. Kyle Melling allowed three runs in one innings of relief.

Game 2

Joel Staples started things off with a bang as he tallied his third home run on the season in the first inning. Staples took a Derek Job pitch over the left-center field wall to give the Gaels an early 2-0 lead.

SMC would add two more in the fifth to take a 4-0 lead. After Eric Cattoni and Cory Miller completed the double steal, freshman Randy Wells drove in Miller on a sac-fly to right. Anthony Aliotti then doubled to bring home Cattoni.

Aliotti got the job done on the hill as well. The freshman southpaw struck out six batters in the first two innings to end up with nine on the afternoon. Aliotti allowed one run and walked two in 5.2 innings.

The Thunderbirds crawled back and made it a ballgame when they plated a run in the sixth and two more in the seventh. Senior Michael Nisco came in to close the door for the Gaels. Nisco recorded his second save after taking over for Scott Schneider. Nisco struck out three and allowed one hit in two innings of relief.

Saint Mary's will look for the series sweep tomorrow in the fourth and final contest. First pitch is scheduled for 1 p.m. from Louis Guisto Field.

San Diego - 5
Houston - 4

SAN DIEGO, Calif. - Junior third baseman Kevin Hansen leaped high into the air to catch line drive, then stepped on third for a double play in the top of the ninth inning, then delivered a bases-loaded RBI single in the bottom of the ninth inning to lead the 22nd-ranked University of San Diego baseball team (18-9) to a thrilling 5-4 win over the University of Houston (11-11) Saturday afternoon at Cunningham Stadium. With the win, the Toreros claim the three-game non-conference series with the Cougars.

After Houston rallied in the top of the ninth inning, scoring two runs to tie the game at 4-4, the Cougars placed runners at second and third with only one out. Felix Fanaselle stepped to the plate and hit a hard line drive down the third baseline that had had the appearance of being too high for the 5-10 Hansen, but Hansen displayed his leaping ability and snagged the ball out of the air and then touched third base, as the runner who was on third broke for the plate, to end the Cougars threat.

USD then was faced with a 4-4 tie and was looking for some more Cunningham Stadium magic, and they got just that. Logan Gelbrich led off the inning with a stand-up double to right field. Chris Viegas was inserted in Gelbrich's place as a pinch runner and he advanced to third when Daniel Magness laid down a bunt to the pitcher who attempted to throw Viegas out at third, but the ball went behind the third baseman, allowing Viegas to stay at third and Magness to safely reach first base. Mike Metzger then walked to load the bases with no outs, which set the stage for more Hansen heroics. Hansen then drove a single through the left side to bring in the winning run and giving USD the victory.

San Diego jumped out to an early lead in the second inning. Nicol got things started with a walk, then Gelbrich hit an infield single to the shortstop, who fell backwards and tried to throw Nicol out at second, but the ball was wide allowing Nicol to not only reach second base but come all the way around to score an unearned run and put the score at 1-0.

The Cougars then answered back in the top of the third inning scoring an unearned run on a Dustin Kingsbury RBI single up the middle to even the score at 1-1.

San Diego then regained the lead in the fifth inning when Justin Snyder hit the ball to the shortstop, who then committed a fielding error to allow Kevin Muno, who had singled, to come across for the 2-1 USD lead.

The Toreros then added two more runs in the bottom of the sixth inning as Shane Buschini led off the inning with a double to left field. After a Nicol walk, Gelbrich reached on a fielder's choice, as the pitcher attempted to throw Buschini out at third, only to have the ball fly past the third baseman and deep into the Torero bullpen. This turn of events allowed Buschini to score and Nicol to score all the way from first to give USD a 4-1 lead.

Houston took one run back in the top of the seventh inning on a Ryan Lorman run-scoring double to center field to cut the Toreros lead to two. UH then scored two runs in the top of the ninth inning to tie the game at 4-4. The Cougars runs came on a Bryan Tully solo home run and a Lormand RBI single, which set the stage for Hansen's heroics.

Offensively for the Toreros, Hansen and Gelbrich led the way as they both went 2-for-4 with Hansen adding an RBI.

AJ Griffin (4-1) picked up the win on the mound for the Toreros as he allowed three runs on three hits in 3.0 innings of work. Tully (1-1) took the loss for the Cougars as he allowed one run on two hits in 0.0 innings of work.

The two teams will return to action on Sunday at 1 p.m. to close out the three-game series at Cunningham Stadium.

UCSB - 5
LMU - 4

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - LMU baseball sported kelly green hats with a crimson "LMU" in honor of St. Patrick's Day, but luck was not on the Lions' side Saturday at UC Santa Barbara. For the second straight day, the Lions (10-14-1) saw a 4-4 tie game tilt to the Gauchos' (9-10) favor in the bottom of the eighth. The home run by UCSB's Mike Zuanich was the game-winner.

With LMU reliever Lee Roberts entering the 4-4 game to throw the bottom of the eighth, UCSB leadoff batter Zuanich welcomed him with a solo home run that proved to be the difference in the tight ballgame.

Roberts, a sophomore, suffered his first career loss and fell to 1-1 on the season.

Gaucho closer Justin Segal (1-0) held the Lions scoreless in the top of the ninth for the second straight day to earn the win.

The Lions had plenty of opportunities Saturday, as the UCSB pitching staff issued 11 free passes to the basepaths. Nine of them came in the form of walks, led by starter Chuck Huggins' seven. The other two were hit batters, both by Huggins as well.

But LMU left nine runners on base, tallying just four hits on the day.

The Lions were able to strike first Saturday, but not without some help from Huggins. Walks and hit batters brought in two runs in the second inning to put LMU up 2-0 early.

UCSB designated hitter Matt Anderson cut the lead in half in the bottom of the frame with a leadoff home run.

The Gauchos went up 3-2 in the fifth, scoring a pair of runs on back-to-back singles by Mario Lewis and Robbie Blauer.

With two outs in the sixth, UCSB made it 4-2 when Shane Carlson's double plated Chris McMurray.

But LMU was able to rally in the top of the seventh after getting leadoff batter Eric Farris on base with a walk from reliever Bryan Fleming. DeAndre Miller followed with a single through the right side that advanced Farris to second. Sean Dovel moved both runners into scoring position with a sacrifice bunt. That proved even more valuable when Fleming was called for a balk to score Farris and put Miller on third. A sacrifice fly from Angelo Songco then brought in Miller to tie the game at 4-4 and set up Zuanich's heroics.

The Lions fell in Friday and Saturday's games by a combined three runs, as Friday's final score was 6-4.

The late game heroics erased a solid performance by LMU starter Daniel Macias, who worked 7.0 innings and allowed the four runs on eight hits. He struck out four, while issuing the only walk of the day for the Lion pitching staff. His seven innings of work marked the eighth straight game a member of the LMU rotation has worked into at least the seventh inning.

The final line for Huggins was an unusual one, as the starter worked 5.0 innings with seven walks, but allowed just one LMU hit. He gave way to Matt Wade and Fleming before Segal earned the win after 2.0 innings of work.

Miller had the first two hits of the game for LMU and finished 2-for-4 with one RBI and one run scored. Left fielder Brett Mendoza and shortstop Michael Glomb had the only other hits for the Lions.

McMurray and Patrick Rose each had two hits for UCSB.

The three-game series concludes Sunday with a 1:00 p.m. start. Fans can catch the action right here at www.LMULions.com on both Gametracker and Lions' All-Access audio.

Utah - 7
Portland - 5

PORTLAND, Ore. - The Portland baseball team couldn't get lucky this Saint Patrick's Day, dropping a 7-5 game to the visiting Utah. The Pilots fall to 10-8 on the year while Utah improves to 5-14.

With the bases painted green to celebrate the holliday, Portland spotted Utah a 3-0 lead in the top of the first inning and was unable to recover from the early deficit. Utes starter Eric King (2-1) picked up the win, holding the Pilots to one run and five hits while striking out five over six innings of work. Junior Ari Ronick (2-2) took the loss for Portland, allowing five runs, six hits and four walks in 5.2 innings.

Senior left fielder Justin Pierce (pictured) went 2-for-4 with two walks and a run scored for the Pilots. Sophomore first baseman Chase Powell also had multiple hits, going 2-for-5. Junior Cory Wiltshire went 1-for-3 with an RBI and two runs scored, while Adam Kerr also picked up an RBI as a pinch hitter. As a team, the Pilots had 11 hits and one error, compared to 12 hits and four errors for Utah.

Catcher Cody Guymon was the hero for the Utes, going 4-for-5 while collecting two RBI and two doubles. Third baseman Erich Kemp was the only other Utah player with multiple hits, going 2-for-5 and picking up an RBI. John Welsh and Nick Lowery also had RBIs for Utah.

Trailing 6-1 in the bottom of the seventh inning, Portland loaded the bases with no outs on Stephen Fife, who entered at the top of the inning to relieve King. Utah then turned a double-play to minimize the damage, but the Pilots were still able to score two runs to cut the lead to 6-3.

After a scoreless inning of relief by sophomore Brian Yoakum, Portland cut the lead to 6-4 in the bottom of the eighth on an RBI double down the first base line by Wiltshire. But reliever Brett Bruneel came in to get the Utes out of a jam, getting junior designated hitter Danny Meier to ground out with two runners in scoring position to end the threat.

After Utah pushed the lead to 7-4 in the top of the ninth, the Pilots had several opportunities to tie the game, getting the first two runners on base. Following a strike out and a fielder's choice, junior Adam Kerr came on as a pinch hitter with two on and two out and delivered a clutch single, plating one run to cut the lead to 7-5. Junior second baseman Brandon Howard then walked to load the bases, but Pierce flied out to left field to end the game, giving Bruneel the save.

The Pilots and Utes square off in the rubber match tomorrow at 11:30 a.m. at Joe Etzel Field. The game is the third of a 14-game home stand for the Pilots.

Oregon State - 9
San Francisco - 2

Corvallis, OR - USF took its first lead of the series with a first inning home run from senior outfielder Jonnie Knoble, but Oregon State countered with seven runs in the bottom of the frame and seized a 9-2 non-conference baseball win Saturday afternoon at Goss Stadium at Coleman Field. The Dons (9-11) found their stroke at the plate, connecting on nine hits, but the fifth-ranked Beavers (19-3) clubbed a pair of home runs in winning their eighth straight.

Knoble lofted the 0-1 pitch from OSU starter Joe Paterson (4-1) over the wall in left for his fourth career homer and added an RBI on a groundout in the fifth. Freshman infielder Derrick Poppert finished 2-for-4 with a pair of doubles while junior infielder Mitchell Bialosky added a 2-for-4 day.

Oregon State bounced back from its first deficit of the series, plating seven runs with two outs in the first. The Beavers sent 11 batters to the plate in the frame and collected six hits - including a three-run home run from outfielder John Wallace - and capitalized on a pair of walks.

Senior right-hander Jason Dufloth (3-3) suffered the loss for the Dons, allowing seven runs off seven hits in 2.1 innings. Senior left-hander Cole Stipovich was strong in 5.2 innings relief, allowing two runs off three hits and struck out three in his longest outing in the Green and Gold. Stipovich retired the first 12 consecutive batters he faced.

USF looks to bounce back in the series finale Sunday. First pitch against the defending national champions is set for noon at Goss Stadium at Coleman Field.

UC Riverside - 17
Santa Clara - 3

RIVERSIDE, Calif. - The Bronco baseball team dropped its second straight game to the UC Riverside Highlanders on Saturday afternoon. UCR broke open a close game with 12 runs in the bottom of the eighth to turn a 5-3 lead into a 17-3 win. Santa Clara will look to bounce back in the final game of the series on Sunday in Riverside.

The day started well for the Broncos as Evan LeBlanc hit his first home run as a Bronco, a two-out home run in the second inning to put SCU up 1-0. However, UC Riverside responded in the second with a home run by Mike Vass to tie the game up.

Bronco starter Matt Wickswat battled throughout the game and gave SCU five solid innings. Wickswat gave up 10 hits, but he was able to limit the damage and allowed just three runs to leave the Broncos trailing just 3-2 after five innings.

Alex Rivers relieved Wickswat and pitched a 1-2-3 sixth inning. However, the Highlanders struck for two more runs in the seventh to stretch their lead to 5-2. A two-out home run by Jaime Pedroza accounted for the two runs.

Mark O'Brien's squad would not quit there, as Carl Bacon led off the top of the eighth with a double, one of three hits on the day for the Bronco designated hitter. He was driven home by an RBI groundout by David Hoffmire to cut the deficit to 5-3.

UC Riverside put the game out of reach with a huge inning in the bottom of the eighth. The Highlanders had 11 hits in the inning and scored 12 runs to turn a tight game into a rout.

Gabe Alcantar had three more hits for the Broncos to raise his season average to a team-leading .398. He also leads the team with 11 doubles and 13 extra-base hits.

Santa Clara fell back to 13-13 with the loss and will look to salvage the final game of the series on Sunday, March 18 at 1:00 p.m. PT.