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WCC Baseball Recaps

April 24, 2007

Santa Clara - 9
Fresno State - 1

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Seizing it's opportunities when the time was ripe, the Santa Clara baseball team capitalized on three errors by Fresno State on Tuesday night, breaking open a close game with six unanswered runs on the way to a 9-1 win at Stephen Schott Stadium. Despite falling behind by a run in the first inning, the Bronco bats put the game's final nine runs across in the victory.

The Broncos (21-21) will remain home this weekend, continuing West Coast Conference play against the Loyola Marymount Lions. The three-game series gets underway with a 7 p.m. first pitch Friday night, and continues with 1 p.m. starts on Saturday and Sunday.

"Tonight was a big win, to beat a team of the caliber of Fresno State, is a big deal for us," said head coach Mark O'Brien. "To take four out of five games this season from the WAC leaders, it bodes well for our team heading into the final month of the regular season."

Sean O'Neill was masterful for the second straight start, earning his first win of the year by allowing only one run on five hits while striking out five in six innings of work.

On the offensive side of things, Tommy Medica continued to hit the ball well, going 3-for-4 with a double and two singles, and driving in six of SCU's runs. David Hoffmire, Jon Karcich, and Evan LeBlanc each had a hit and scored a pair of runs.

"Tommy's been swinging the bat the best for us lately, which is a big reason we moved him to the three hole in the order, and he's been producing for us big time," O'Brien said of his freshman star. "He does a great job of really staying within himself up there at the plate."

Santa Clara broke Tuesday night's contest wide open by scoring six runs over the fifth and sixth innings, with Medica driving in four of those runs.

Leading 3-1 heading into the fifth, the Broncos caught a break when Karcich, despite being caught off of first base on a pickoff attempt, safely reached second when Fresno State first baseman Alan Ahmady fumbled the ball during the ensuing rundown. With a second life, SCU took advantage, as LeBlanc drove Karcich in with a base hit up the middle, and, after stealing second, was himself driven in on Medica's doubledown the left-field line.

Medica provided the big hit again in the sixth, lining a two-out, bases-loaded single to right center that cleared the bases. The runners had been moving on the 3-2 pitch, and with Medica's hit forcing a long cutoff run from the right fielder, LeBlanc was able to hustle his way around to score from first, making it a 9-1 Santa Clara lead.

The Bulldogs, despite manufacturing a run in the first for the early lead, could not take advantage of their own favorable situations on offense against O'Neill. A two-on, two-out situation ended with a groundout to second in the second inning, and in the fourth, with runners on second and third with only one out, O'Neill promptly struck out Fresno State designated hitter Steve Detwiler, then, after walking Danny Grubb to load the bases, induced an inning-ending fielder's choice from David Hernandez.

"I'm very proud of Sean's effort tonight," said O'Brien. "When he is in the zone and hitting his spots, he is a tough guy to hit. I was very impressed with how he kept his poise and stayed calm out there and got out of some tough situations."

The Broncos took the lead for good in the third inning, as Karcich walked to lead things off, then went to third on Hoffmire's base hit. Karcich scored on Bulldog starter Sean Bonesteele's balk, and two batters after Matt Long bunted on and stole second, Medica whipped a single to left that brought in a pair to give SCU the 3-1 lead.

Bonesteele gave up three runs in two and a third innings, suffering his first loss of the year. Brandon Miller gave up two runs and Drew Gagnier four over four innings of combined relief, but due to a pair of Fresno State errors, all six runs were unearned.

Washington State - 12
Gonzaga - 9

PULLMAN, Wash. - Evan Wells and Darin Holcomb led Gonzaga University with three hits each, but it wasn't enough as the Bulldogs fell to Washington State University 12-9 Tuesday night in Pullman, Wash.

Gonzaga falls to 26-19 overall with the loss, while Washington State improves to 20-18 and earned the season-series after taking three of four games from the Zags this season.

A total of 12 pitchers were used in the contest, with six from each team. The Bulldogs' starter Bobby McEwen (0-2) suffered the loss after allowing five runs on three hits and two walks over 0.2 innings. WSU's Michael Ratigan (3-2) earned the victory, allowing one run on two hits over 1.1 frames of relief. Ross Humes earned this eighth save of the season by recording the final out of the ninth inning.

The Bulldogs posted an early 1-0 lead in the opening half of the first inning thanks to Holcomb's fifth home run of the season.

The lead did not last long though, as the Cougars responded with five runs in the bottom of the frame. After retiring the first two batters, Washington State loaded the bases before Jeff Miller drew a walk to force in a run. The next batter, Nick Hall then hit a bases clearing double down the left field line to score three. Hall was then plated during the next at-bat on a single to right center by Greg Lagreid. Washington State added a pair runs in the second to extend its lead to 7-1. The two runs were scored on a sacrifice fly and a failed pick off attempt.

Gonzaga added a run to its total in the top of the third. Wells scored the run when Ryan Wiegand grounded into a double play. Wells led off the inning with a single up the middle, before advancing to second and third on a back-to-back walks.

The Cougars combined a run-scoring double to left and a fielder's choice in the fourth to post two additional runs and take the 9-2 advantage.

The Zags narrowed Washington State's lead to 9-5 with three runs in the fifth. The runs were scored on a single to left by Holcomb, a sacrifice fly by Wiegand and when Aaron McGuinness hit into a fielder's choice.

Following a WSU run in the bottom of the fifth, Gonzaga posted a run in the top of the sixth to bring the tally to 10-7 in favor of the Cougars. The Bulldogs' Mike Terry led off the sixth inning with his first career triple before scoring on the next play, a ground out by Brandon Blank .

The Cougars finalized their scoring in the eighth with a one-run single up the middle by Mike Glibert, extending their lead to 12-6.

Gonzaga rallied in the ninth but fell short, scoring three runs and stranding two men on base to finalize the score at 12-9. With runners on second and third with no outs, pinch hitter Mark Castellitto drove in a run with a ground out to the shortstop. Dustin Colclough then singled through the left side to drive home the second inning run before advancing to second on balk during the next at-bat and scoring the Zags' final run on a fielding error.

The Bulldogs will look to gain ground in the West Coast Conference title race, as well as improve on their 9-3 conference record this weekend when Gonzaga travels to the University of San Francisco. The three-game conference series will start Friday with a 3 p.m. first pitch.

UC Irvine - 14
LMU - 8

LOS ANGELES - With the scored tied 5-5 in the top of the sixth, 16th-ranked UC Irvine unloaded for six runs in the frame to take the lead over LMU (18-26-1) for good in the non-conference Tuesday match-up at Page Stadium. The teams combined for 22 runs and 31 hits in the slugfest, but the nationally-ranked Anteaters (29-11-1) got the better end of the deal with the 14-8 victory.

For the Lions, Tuesday's game marked the fifth-straight contest against a team ranked in the nation's top-25. Last Tuesday, LMU posted a win over then-25th-ranked Long Beach State at Blair Field. The Lions then hosted 18th-ranked San Diego over the weekend.

The biggest jolt of Tuesday's six-run sixth inning came on back-to-back home runs by Matthew Morris and Sean Madigan. Morris's was a three run shot.

UC Irvine had scored three runs in the fifth inning to take a 5-2 lead on the Lions.

But LMU scored three in the bottom of the fifth to tie the game at 5-5. Senior Elvis Herrera and freshman Ryan Wheeler used a pair of extra base hits to drive in the tying runs.

The Lions' first two runs came on sacrifice flies by Herrera and Joe Zeller.

LMU scored three more runs in the seventh, thanks to a solo home run by junior Michael Glomb and a two-run single by senior DeAndre Miller.

But the comeback bid was not enough as the Anteaters continued to tack on the runs. UC Irvine pushed three more runs across in their final three at bats.

In the staff pitching day for both teams, relievers Chris Lopez and Mike Kenney earned the decisions. Lopez (1-0) earned the win for the Anteaters after throwing two innings, allowing three runs on four hits. Kenney (2-3) suffered the loss after 0.2 innings, as he was charged with five runs on four hits.

Freshman Xavier Esquivel made his third start for the Lions and worked 5.0 innings before leaving the 5-5 game in the hands of Kenney.

UC Irvine starter Cory Hamilton worked three innings and allowed an unearned run on two hits.

Miller and Wheeler each with 3-for-4 with two RBI and a run scored Tuesday for the Lions. Eric Farris and Michael Glomb each had two hits as well.

First baseman Taylor Holiday went 4-for-6 with five runs scored for the Anteaters.

The Lions continue West Coast Conference play this weekend with a three-game set at Santa Clara. Fans can catch all of the action here at www.LMULions.com on both Gametracker and Lions' All-Access.

Oregon State - 10
Portland - 1

PORTLAND, Ore. - The eighth-ranked Oregon State Beavers scored eight runs in the top of the seventh inning en route to a 10-1 non-conference win over the Portland Pilots on Tuesday. The meeting between Oregon's only two NCAA Division I baseball teams drew a record crowd of 1,002 to Joe Etzel Field.

The loss drops Portland's overall record to 17-22, while Oregon State improves to 32-8.

The Beavers entered the seventh clinging to a 2-1 lead. Oregon State sent 14 hitters to the plate during the inning, while three UP pitchers took the mound. Junior reliever Chris Siegfried started the inning and surrendered four runs on two hits and two walks in one-third of an inning. Senior reliever Josh Roberts also pitched one-third of an inning and gave up four runs on four hits and two walks.

Jason Ogata started the scoring in the seventh with an RBI single. Then with the bases loaded and no outs, Jordan Lennerton hit a bases-clearing double that gave the Beavs a quick 7-1 lead. On the play, Darwin Barney and Mike Lissman scored almost simultaneously, with both sliding as the relay throw got away from catcher Rocky Gale.

OSU scored three more runs in the inning, before senior reliever Brian Cox induced an inning-ending fly out from Lissman.

Oregon State started the game with two runs in the top of the first off of Portland starter Danny Meier (1-3). Barney had an RBI single before Lissman scored on a wild pitch.

The Pilots' lone run came in the bottom of the second. With two outs and runners on first and second, sophomore Paul Crowder hit an RBI single up the middle.

Portland used seven pitchers during the game. Juniors Given Kutz and Brian Yoakum each pitched two scoreless innings. Cox didn't allow a run in one and one-third inning, while redshirt-freshman Tommy Renda pitched a scoreless ninth.

OSU starter Daniel Turpen (7-1) gave up one run on four hits in 5.0 innings, while striking out four. Three relievers followed Turpen.

The Pilots were outhit by the Beavers 12-5. Ogata had three hits and three RBI's, while Barney finished with three hits and two RBI's.

The Pilots, who are 4-8 in the West Coast Conference, next travel to Moraga, Calif. for a three-game WCC series against the Saint Mary's Gaels this weekend. The Pilots and Gaels are slated to play at 3:00 p.m. on Friday and at 1:00 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday.

UC Davis - 6
San Francisco - 1

San Francisco, CA - The University of San Francisco fell to UC Davis 6-1 in non-conference baseball action at Benedetti Diamond on Tuesday afternoon. The Aggies (14-23) out-hit USF (21-22) 11-to-4 in the contest.

Senior LHP Cole Stipovich (1-2) threw 3.0 innings in the loss, giving up two earned runs off four hits and added a strikeout. The Berkeley native made his first career start on the mound in his 23rd appearance this season. Senior RHP John Quine gave up three earned runs in 3.0 innings of relief, off five hits, two walks, and recorded two strikeouts. The Aggies final run came at the hands of Junior LHP Matt Baugh, who gave up one earned run off one hit and a walk in an inning of work.

Aggies RHP Bryan Evans (3-4) threw 8.0 innings and struck out a career-high 10 as he effectively shut down the Dons offense. The sophomore scattered four hits and two walks in the outing.

Senior center fielder Jonnie Knoble singled in the fourth on a bunt and advanced to second on a throwing error by Aggies junior third baseman Daniel Descalso. He advanced to third on sophomore left fielder Zach Kim's sacrifice bunt, and scored on junior first baseman Mitchell Bialosky's double to left.

Knoble's hit gives him 43 for the season and 168 for his career. One more base knock and he'll be tied with Scott Cousins (2004-06) for 15th all time on the Dons hits chart. Bialosky, junior shortstop Brian Chavez, and freshman third baseman Derek Poppert added hits for the Dons. Poppert stole his first career base on the Hill Top and junior second baseman Joey Railey added his 16th.

USF returns to action this weekend when it hosts Gonzaga in a three-game West Coast Conference series at Benedetti Diamond. Game time for Friday is 3:00 PM.