May 5, 2007
SPOKANE, Wash. - - Seniors Aaron McGuinness and Clayton Mortensen posted strong performances Sunday as the Gonzaga University baseball team defeated visiting Loyola Marymount University 9-2 at Patterson Baseball Complex and Washington Trust Field. The win solidified a three-game series victory over the Lions for the Bulldogs, as the third-game of the series will be played Sunday.
Gonzaga improves to 29-21 overall and 12-5 in conference play with the victory. The Zags also moved a full game ahead of Pepperdine University for second place in the WCC standings, as the Waves are idle this weekend. Loyola Marymount drops to 20-29-1 for the season, including 7-10 against league opponents.
Mortensen (7-2) recorded the victory in his final career start at home, going 7.1 innings allowing two runs on eight hits while striking out four. He now has 101 strikeouts for the season, marking the seventh time in Bulldog history a pitcher has recorded 100 or more strikeouts in a season. He also ranks tied for sixth on the single-season all-time list, tied with Mike Davey. LMU starter Brian Wilson (4-6) suffered the loss, allowing seven runs, six earned, on 11 hits over 5.1 innings of work.
The Lions jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the top of the first frame when Eric Farris led off the game with an infield single, before scoring during the next at-bat on a single to left center by DeAndre Miller.
The Zags answered with three runs in the bottom of the frame to take the lead 3-2 and not relinquish the lead for the remainder of the game. The three runs of the inning were plated on singles by Dustin Colclough, McGuinness and Shawn Wayt.
Gonzaga added an additional run in the third to extend its lead to 4-1. Ryan Wiegand, who led off with a single for one of his three hits on the afternoon, scored the run on a sacrifice fly to center by Wayt.
Loyola Marymount scored its second and final run of the afternoon in the top of the fifth on a Bulldog fielding error.
The Bulldogs added a run in the fifth and pair of runs in both the sixth and seventh innings to finalize scoring. The lone run of the fifth frame was scored when McGuinness doubled down the left field line to score Wiegand, who had doubled to reach base. In the sixth, the runs came thanks to a sacrifice fly by Darin Holcomb, as well as a one-run single through the right side by Wiegand. Gonzaga used run-scoring doubles by Mike Terry and Brandon Blank in the seventh to finalize the score at 9-2.
For the second straight game, all nine batters in the Zags' starting lineup recorded hits, highlighted by three hit performances by both McGuinness and Wiegand. Seven of the nine in the lineup also recorded runs batted in with McGuinness and Wayt leading the way with two a piece.
The Bulldogs and Lions will wrap up the three-game series Sunday at 1 p.m. in the final game to be played at Patterson Baseball Complex and Washington Trust Field this season. The game will mark Senior Day and prior to the game, the Zags will honor seniors Colclough, Bobby McEwen, McGuinness, Josh Monroe, Mortensen and Terry in a special ceremony.