April 5, 2007
PORTLAND, Ore. - University of Portland junior lefthander David Gruener went the distance and the Pilots exploded for a season-high 18 hits in a 9-1 win over Gonzaga University in the opening game of a 3-game West Coast Conference baseball series Thursday afternoon at Joe Etzel Field.
Gonzaga fell to 18-16 overall and evened its WCC record at 2-2 while the Pilots leveled their record at 14-14 and 2-2 in the WCC.
The teams will take Good Friday off then complete the series with a double-header Saturday beginning at 11 a.m.
Gruener (1-2) tossed his second complete game of the season, scattering seven hits, striking out seven and walking two.
The Bulldogs fell behind 7-0 before breaking through with their only run in the seventh. The Bulldogs loaded the bases on one-out singles by Ryan Wiegand, Dustin Cloclough and Aaron McGuinnes, the latter with three of the Bulldogs seven hits. But Gruener minimized the damage by allowing just a sacrifice fly to Sean Wayt that scored Wigand, then got Brandon Blank on a called third strike to end the threat.
The Pilots struck first with three runs in the bottom of the second of Gonzaga starter and loser Josh Monroe (4-2). With two out the Pilots rattled off five straight singles.
Portland added an unearned run in the bottom of the fourth before scoring three more in the bottom of the fifth to take the 7-0 lead.
The Pilots collected 18 hits off five Gonzaga pitchers, 17 of them singles. Junior outfielder Cory Wiltshire, who went 3-for-5 with three RBI, had UP's lone extra base hit with a double in the fifth inning.
Monroe lasted just four innings, surrendering four runs on 10 hits.