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USF Hosts San Jose State; Also Meets Sacramento State This Week

Feb. 5, 2007

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USF MEETS SPARTANS AND HORNETS IN WEEK TWO: USF will host San Jose State in a mid-week game on Tuesday at the College of San Mateo. Game time is set for 2:00 PM. The Dons travel to Sacramento State for two on Friday (2:00 PM) and Saturday (1:00 PM) and host the Hornets at the College of San Mateo on Sunday at 1:00 PM in the weekend finale.



SCOUTING SAN JOSE STATE: The 2007 San Jose State University baseball team, with a substantial contingent of 15 seniors and a multitude of new, young talent that includes eight freshmen and one sophomore, will look for its third consecutive season of a .500-or-better overall record. After finishing 28-28-1 in 2005, the Spartans improved to 33-26 in 2006. Head coach Sam Piraro, who has compiled 620 wins, enters a milestone 20th season in charge of the Spartans. The pitching staff returns two starters that were in the rotation throughout the 2006 season, in Josh Amberson and Loren Moneypenny. The second-year senior right-handers performed well during the fall. Amberson (6-4, 4.22) was a two-time WAC "Pitcher of the Week." Moneypenny pitched close to 100 innings, including three complete games, and led the team with 80 strikeouts.

LAST MEETINGS: SJSU 6, USF 5 (2/14/06); SJSU 7, USF 0 (4/18/06)

LAST TIME AGAINST THE DONS: In game one, USF rallied for three runs with two outs in the ninth, but came up short in the end as they fell to San Jose State University 6-5. Sophomore infielder Joey Railey continued to pound the ball, coming only a homerun away from the cycle. His first hit of the game was a triple to center field in the third, and then he added a single in the fifth. The Pittsburg, CA native's big blow came in the bottom of the ninth. With two outs and the bases loaded, Railey doubled to center to score all three runners and put the Dons to within one. But the rally came to an end one batter later as junior outfielder Scott Cousins popped up to second base to end the game. In game two, USF baseball dropped a tough 7-0 decision at San Jose State spoiling a beautiful night at Municipal Stadium. Senior outfielder Stefan Gartrell and junior outfielder Lucas DeLong each tallied a pair of base hits for San Francisco, while DeLong struck for his fifth double of the season - the only extra base hit for the Dons on the night.


SCOUTING SACRAMENTO STATE: Sacramento State begins 2007 with just three returning position starters and two returning starting pitchers. The Hornets will have a definitive new look for the new year. Departed are three four-year starters; outfielder Jim Strombach, shortstop Everet Rincon and first baseman Brian Blauser as well as 2006 all-WAC first team selection, catcher Buddy Morales. While the Hornets will have lost some familiar faces in the program, all-WAC second team third baseman David Flores is set to begin his junior season, along with senior second baseman Gary Johnson and senior rightfielder Montana Dye, the three remaining position starters from a year ago. In its first year of competition in the WAC a year ago, Sacramento State advanced to the postseason tournament, but was selected in the 2007 Coaches'' Poll to finish seventh in the standings. In the Baseball America preview, the Hornets were picked to finish sixth.

LAST MEETINGS: USF 11, SAC 5 (2/10/06); USF 10, SAC 5 (2/11/06); SAC 6, USF 2 (2/12/06); USF 6, SAC 2 (2/26/06); USF 4, SAC 2 (3/15/06)

LAST WEEK: In the season opening series, USF took two of three from Fresno State for the first time since 2003. In game one, Junior left-hander Aaron Poreda threw 5.0 innings, allowing only one run off four hits and not giving up a free pass. Fifth year senior left fielder Jonnie Knoble is rehabbed from last season's injury and smacked two hits, including a double and added a stolen base and two runs scored. Junior first baseman Mitchell Bialosky had two hits, including a three-run homerun in the top of the fourth, four RBI, and a run scored. Junior third baseman Brian Chavez earned his first hit as a Don and also scored a run.

In game two, Senior right-hander Jason Dufloth threw 7.0 innings, only giving up two hits and no runs to earn the win. Sophomore right-hander John Quine earned his first save of the season, throwing two innings, giving up three runs off four hits and had four strikeouts. The Bulldogs starter, junior right-hander Brandon Burke matched Dufloth's seven scoreless innings until hitting trouble in the eighth. Two consecutive singles by senior catcher Jon Norfolk and junior first baseman Mitchell Bialosky were followed by a two-RBI double from junior second baseman Joey Railey. Junior shortstop Tavo Hall reached base on an error by Burke and an out later, freshman pinch hitter Derek Poppert singled in both Railey and Hall.

USF fell 5-4 in game three. USF got the scoring started in the first on a Joey Railey single and senior left fielder Jonnie Knoble's RBI single two outs later. But the Bulldogs answered in the bottom of the frame off a walk, a single, and a run scoring double play. The Dons regained the lead in the second, but it would be short lived as the Bulldogs scored two in the fourth and one in the fifth. USF mounted a comeback in the ninth with the bases loaded and no outs, but Fresno's junior right hander Jason Breckley stopped the rally to earn the save. Junior transfer Matt Baugh started for USF, throwing 4.1 innings and allowing four runs off five hits. Junior right hander Brian Anderson threw 2.1 innings of relief, allowing the Bulldogs final run off three hits, and earned the loss.

WHO'S HOT FOR THE DONS: Junior left-hander Aaron Poreda sparkled in his season debut, throwing 5.0 innings, allowing only one run off four hits and not giving up a free pass. Poreda earned his 11th career victory and is only one away from entering the top-10 in the USF career victories chart. Senior right-hander Daniel Morales closed out game one, throwing an inning of scoreless ball, only allowing two hits and striking out a batter in his college pitching debut. Senior right-hander Jason Dufloth pitched seven nearly flawless innings, only giving up two hits and no runs to earn the win in game two. Sophomore right-hander John Quine earned his first save of the season, throwing two innings, giving up three runs off four hits and had four strikeouts. Junior first baseman Mitchell Bialosky came away from the weekend batting .300 with a homerun, four RBI, two walks and two runs scored. Senior left fielder Jonnie Knoble, who is rehabbed from a season ending injury last year batted .364 over the weekend with a double, an RBI, a stolen base, two walks and two runs scored.

DONS DEBUTS: Four Dons made their debut in the Green and Gold over the weekend. Junior third baseman Brian Chavez started all three games in the five spot earning a hit and scoring a run in game one and walking and scoring a run in game three. Freshman Derek Poppert stroked a two RBI pinch hit single in game one. Junior LHP Matt Baugh started Sunday's game and threw 4.1 innings, giving up five hits and four runs, and struckout two batters. Redshirt Freshman Bobby Ethel pinch ran in game two.