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WCC Baseball Recaps

March 28, 2008

San Diego - 1
Santa Clara - 0

SAN DIEGO, Calif. - In an old fashion pitchers dual, the University of San Diego's junior All-American pitcher Brian Matusz came out on top as he helped lead the 14th-ranked Toreros to a 1-0 West Coast Conference win over Santa Clara University (12-9, 0-1 WCC) in the WCC opener for both teams.

Matusz (5-1) picked up his fifth win of the season as he allowed no runs on seven hits in his second complete game of the season. Matusz struck out eight while lowing her season ERA to 1.81. Nate Garcia (2-2) was saddled with the loss for the Broncos as he allowed one run on seven hits in 8.0 innings of work.

The Toreros (19-8, 1-0 WCC) pushed across the lone run of the game in the first inning. Kevin Muno got things rolling with a bunt single and he moved to second on Sean Nicol's sacrifice bunt. Victor Sanchez then brought in Muno with a RBI single to centerfield to give USD the 1-0 lead.

The Broncos had their best scoring opportunity to come in the third inning as they were able to take advantage of a USD miscue and load the bases with two outs, but Matusz then got Evan LeBlanc to fly out to left field to end the scoring threat and preserve the 1-0 lead.

The Toreros also had several chances to push across another run as they loaded the bases in the third inning. Nicol got things started with a single, moved to second on a throwing error by the pitcher, then moved to third on a Sanchez single to center field. Sanchez advanced to second on a wild pitch and USD loaded the bases when James Meador was intentionally walked. But the Broncos got Kevin Hansen to ground into a double play to end the scoring threat.

Offensively for the Toreros, Sanchez led the way as he went 2-for-4 with one double and one RBI. The only other USD player to record multiple hits was Nicol as he went 2-for-3.

The Toreros will return to action on Saturday with a 1 p.m. game against Santa Clara at Cunningham Stadium.

San Francisco - 2
Saint Mary's - 0

Moraga, CA - In a game that can only be considered a pitching and defensive duel, San Francisco came out on top, 2-0 over Saint Mary's in West Coast Conference opening play at Luis Guisto Field on Friday afternoon. The Dons (15-10, 1-0 WCC) earn their seventh straight victory and ruin a very good outing by Gaels (13-9, 0-1 WCC) junior right-hander Brian Justice (2-1), who threw a complete game in the loss.

No one broke through on the board until the Dons pushed a run across in the sixth. With two outs - which seems to be a theme for the Dons as of late - senior right fielder Kyle Morgan doubled to right and scored on senior first baseman/right-handed pitcher Mitchell Bialosky's single.

USF added an insurance run in the next frame. Sophomore catcher Ryan Lipkin doubled to begin the inning and moved to third on a wild pitch. Junior third baseman Dane Braunecker singled up the middle, plating Lipkin.

Lipkin and Braunecker led the Dons with two hits a piece. Morgan, Bialosky, and junior designated hitter Drew Johnson each had one. Lipkin and Bialosky had RBI's in the contest.

Several Dons players also saved numerous runs with spectacular fielding plays. In the second inning, the Gaels were threatening with two outs and runners on the corners. SMC's senior right fielder Kenny Fuglerud smashed a big fly out to the middle of nowhere in right center field and a speeding Morgan managed to snag it by laying himself out and ending the inning. In the fourth, again with two outs and with runners on second and third, Bialosky saved not only a run, but also his head, as a line drive was pounded down the line. Lastly, in the seventh, with one out and runners again on the corners, Gaels junior center fielder Cory Miller hit a little ground ball to first. A charging Stephen Yarrow (in his first game as a Don) picked up the ball and made the smart decision to throw out the runner at home.

Bialosky (1-3) had a big day in Moraga. Besides batting in the winning run, he also earned the win on the mound. In a relief outing, Bialosky threw the final 5.0 innings, not allowing a run, off five hits, one walk, and struck out four Gaels. Freshman right-hander Chase Tigert, on a pitch count, threw the first 4.0 innings, not allowing a run off five hits, one walk, and struck out one.

Justice took the loss, but threw what would otherwise have been a gem. In 9.0 innings, he allowed just two earned runs off seven hits, two walks, and struck out four.

In their last seven games, the Dons are batting .356 as a team and the pitching staff has an ERA of just 2.71 and opponents are batting a low .201. USF and Saint Mary's play game two of the three game series tomorrow at Luis Guisto Field. First pitch is set for 1:00 PM.

LMU at Portland - Postponed

PORTLAND, Ore. --- The West Coast Conference baseball opener between the Portland Pilots and Loyola Marymount Lions will be delayed at least one day due to weather. Friday's 3 p.m. game has been postponed because of rain and a doubleheader for Saturday starting at noon has been scheduled. Sunday's game is still scheduled for 1 p.m.

Pepperdine at Gonzaga - Postponed

Spokane, Wash. - The West Coast Conference baseball game scheduled between Gonzaga University and Pepperdine University that was scheduled for Friday at 6:30 p.m. has been postponed due to inclement weather. The three-game series will now open Saturday with a doubleheader scheduled to start at 1 p.m. at Patterson Baseball Complex and Washington Trust Field. The second game will start approximately 30 minutes following the conclusion of game one.

The weekend series marks the opening of WCC play for both the Bulldogs (15-10) and the Waves (16-7).