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WCC Baseball Weekly Notes - 2/6

Feb. 6, 2007

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WCC/Rawlings Player of the Week
Eric Farris, Loyola Marymount

Eric Farris sparked the LMU offense over the weekend, as the Lions recorded a three-game sweep of visiting Sacramento State. Farris batted .571 (8-for-14) at the plate with six RBI and a .533 on base percentage. Two of his eight hits were doubles, and he added two stolen bases on the weekend. The junior also slugged a two out, bases loaded double in the sixth inning that proved to be the game-winning hit in Friday's victory. The three wins marked LMU's first season-opening sweep since 2001.

WCC/Rawlings Pitcher of the Week
Matt Couch, San Diego

Matt Couch was outstanding on the mound, recording a win and a save as the Toreros took two-of-three from then-No. 4 ranked Texas on the road over the weekend. On Friday, Couch retired the final two batters to preserve a 4-3 victory. The junior made the start on Sunday, striking out six batters in six innings of work and allowing just one run to notch the 4-1 win. For the weekend, Couch surrendered one run on five hits, while striking out seven in 6.2 innings. Upcoming Games

Feb. 6
USC at LMU - 2:00 PM
Long Beach State at Pepperdine - 2:00 PM
San Jose State at San Francisco^ - 2:00 PM
UC Davis at Santa Clara - 6:00 PM

Feb. 9
Portland at California - 1:30 PM
UC Davis at Pepperdine - 2:00 PM
San Francisco at Sacramento State - 2:00 PM
Gonzaga at UC Riverside - 3:00 PM
Saint Mary's at Louisiana State - 4:00 PM
San Diego at USC - 6:00 PM
Santa Clara at San Diego State - 6:00 PM
LMU at UC Irvine - 6:00 PM

Feb. 10
Saint Mary's at Louisiana State - 11:00 AM
Gonzaga at UC Riverside - 1:00 PM
UC Davis at Pepperdine - 1:00 PM
Portland at California - 1:00 PM
San Diego at USC - 1:00 PM
San Francisco at Sacramento State - 1:00 PM
Santa Clara at San Diego State - 1:00 PM
LMU at UC Irvine - 6:00 PM

Feb. 11
Saint Mary's at Louisiana State - 10:00 AM
Gonzaga at UC Riverside - 1:00 PM
UC Irvine at LMU - 1:00 PM
UC Davis at Pepperdine - 1:00 PM
Portland at California - 1:00 PM
USC at San Diego - 1:00 PM
Sacramento State at San Francisco^ - 1:00 PM
Santa Clara at San Diego State - 1:00 PM

^ Games Played at College of San Mateo (San Mateo, CA)

Around The WCC

Pepperdine's Brett Hunter Named To Stopper of the Year Watch List
Pepperdine's Brett Hunter was one of 35 players named to the watch list for the third annual National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) Stopper of the Year Award, the association announced last week. The award is given to the top relief pitcher in Division I college baseball. Of the 35 pitchers who make up the initial 2007 watch list, 24 were among the nation's Top 50 in saves at the end of the 2006 season, including eight of the top-12 save totals in the final NCAA rankings. Hunter played a pivotal role for Pepperdine during his rookie season a year ago as he went 5-3 with a 2.83 ERA and 11 saves while making 29 appearances as the Waves' closer. He tied for 22nd in the nation in saves and was tabbed a Freshman All-American.

WCC Baseball On College Sports Television (CSTV)
WCC baseball will continue its long standing relationship with College Sports Television, as a pair of league contests are scheduled to be televised on the network during the upcoming season. This is the fourth straight year that CSTV has broadcast a regular season league contest, and marks the first time that multiple league games will be broadcast to a national television audience in the same season. LMU visits Southern California rival Pepperdine in the first game of the WCC's television package, with the Lions-Waves match up slated for a 1:00 PM (PT) start on Saturday, April 7. Pepperdine will be featured in the second game as well, when the Waves make the trip down the coast to meet San Diego at Cunningham Stadium on Monday, April 30 for a 3:00 PM (PT) start. CSTV can be found on DirecTV channel 610 and Dish Network channel 152.

WCC Team Notes

Gonzaga Bulldogs (0-3 / 0-0 WCC)
- The Zags suffered a three-game sweep at then-No. 27 ranked Arizona to begin the 2007 campaign.

- Aaron McGuinness enjoyed an outstanding weekend to open the season. The senior, who batted just .196 last season, went 3-for-4 in Saturday's 10-3 loss, and was just a home run short of hitting for the cycle. McGuinness batted .556 (5-for-9) on the weekend, and scored two of Gonzaga's four runs during the series.

- Mark Castellitto had a solid debut for the Zags, as the redshirt freshman drove in two runs and collected three hits in his first weekend in a Gonzaga uniform. Two of his hits in the series were doubles.

- Gonzaga continues its 22-game road stretch to open the season, traveling to Southern California to take on UC Riverside in a three-game series this weekend.

LMU Lions (3-0 / 0-0 WCC)
- The Lions opened the new season with a bang, sweeping Sacramento State at Page Stadium over the weekend and out-scoring the Hornets 25-11.

- LMU bats feasted on Sacramento State pitching, as eight Lions batted over .333 for the weekend and the squad batted .390 (39-for-100) as a team. Eric Farris led LMU, batting .571 (8-for-14) with six RBI and a pair of steals.

- Andy Beal collected the save after tossing 1.1 innings in Sunday's 8-5 victory.

- Sean Dovel clubbed his first home run of the season, a two-run shot in Friday's 9-5 win.

- LMU jumps into a busy week of non-conference play, hosting USC (2/6) before meeting UC Irvine for three games this weekend.

Pepperdine Waves (1-2 / 0-0 WCC)
- Pepperdine claimed the opener of its series at UNLV, but dropped the second two games of the set to fall to 1-2.

- Barry Enright was solid in his 2007 mound debut, working seven innings and allowing just three hits and an unearned run to record the victory in Friday's 7-6 win over the Rebels. The right-hander improved his career record to 24-3, and moved within one victory of 10th place on the Pepperdine career wins chart.

- Eric Thames was phenomenal in his Pepperdine debut, as the transfer from West Valley JC batted .667 (6-for-9) with four runs scored and four RBI on the weekend. Thames and junior Adrian Ortiz each legged out a pair of triples during the series at UNLV.

- The Waves open their home slate with a mid-week game against Long Beach State (2/6) before hosting UC Davis for three games this weekend.

Portland Pilots (0-0 / 0-0 WCC)
- Portland finished the 2006 season with a 15-37 overall record and a 3-18 mark against conference opponents.

- Given Kutz returns to the Pilot rotation after missing last season due to injury. In 2005, the junior led Portland in ERA (5.23), wins (6), complete games (4), strikeouts (50), and set a UP program record with 113.1 innings pitched.

- The Pilots led the WCC with 49 home runs as a team in 2006, and Danny Meier returns after hitting nine home runs last season to tie for the team lead.

- UP will play 29 home games in 2007 after playing just 18 at Joe Etzel Field last season.

- The Pilots begin their 2007 slate with a road trip to California this weekend.

Saint Mary's Gaels (3-4 / 0-0 WCC)
- The Gaels rebounded from a 13-11 loss to Patten University to take two-of-three from San Jose State over the weekend.

- Anthony Alliotti has been outstanding in his first few weeks as a Gael. The freshman is batting .478 (11-for-23) with seven RBI as SMC's first baseman, and has notched a 1.17 ERA in three mound appearances. He made his first career start on Sunday, tossing six innings to earn the victory over the Spartans.

- Taylor Stanton saw action in both of Saint Mary's wins over the weekend, working a scoreless ninth inning to earn the win on Friday and nailing down his second save of the season with another scoreless ninth in Sunday's victory.

- After playing six of their first seven games at The Guisto, Saint Mary's hits the road to take on Louisiana State this weekend.

San Diego Toreros (5-1 / 0-0 WCC)
- San Diego continued its early season success, traveling to Texas and taking two-of-three from the then-No. 4 ranked Longhorns over the weekend.

- Brian Matusz continued to baffle opposing lineups, striking out eight batters in 5.2 innings of work on Friday to improve to 2-0 on the season. The sophomore has fanned 21 batters in just 11.2 innings of work through his first two outings.

- Jordan Abruzzo and Shane Buschini each clubbed home runs in Sunday's 4-1 win at Texas. The duo has combined to hit six of USD's eight homers, and drive in 18 of the team's 34 RBI.

- USD jumped into the top-25 for the first time this season after the series at Texas, checking in at No. 17 in the Baseball America poll and at No. 18 in the Collegiate Baseball listing.

- The Toreros meet USC for three games this weekend.

San Francisco Dons (2-1 / 0-0 WCC)
- San Francisco got the season off to a good start, taking two-of-three from Fresno State on the road over the weekend.

- Aaron Poreda earned his 11th career win on Friday after allowing just one earned run in five innings of work against the Bulldogs. The junior is one win shy of cracking the top-10 of USF's career victories chart.

- Jason Dufloth made the start on Saturday, earning the victory after tossing seven innings and allowing no runs on just two hits in the win.

- USF has moved its first seven scheduled home games to alternate sites to accomodate ongoing construction at Benedetti Diamond, and will not play a true home game until March 22.

- The Dons face San Jose State (2/6) before meeting Sacramento State this weekend.

Santa Clara Broncos (4-2 / 0-0 WCC)
- Santa Clara posted a three-game sweep of Utah to open its home schedule at Schott Stadium over the weekend.

- Matt Wickswat struck out a career-high 10 batters in 6.1 innings of work to record the win in Friday's 8-0 shutout of the Utes.

- Jeff Lombard nailed down his first two career saves over the weekend, surrendering just two hits in 2.1 innings pitched to close out Saturday's 6-5 win and Sunday's 3-2 triumph.

- Kevin Drever went 2-for-3 and reached base in four of his five plate appearances in Saturday's win. The senior is currently batting .391 (9-for-23) on the season.

- The Broncos host UC Davis (2/6) before heading out on the road to San Diego State for a three-game set this weekend.