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Deamon Deacons Come to San Diego for Three-Game Set

Feb. 20, 2007

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IN A NUTSHELL: The 18th-ranked University of San Diego baseball team (9-4) will host Wake Forest University in a three-game non-conference series this up coming weekend at Cunningham Stadium. Friday's game is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m., Saturday's contest will begin at 1 p.m. and Sunday's game will start at 11 a.m.

SCOUTING THE DEAMON DEACONS: The Deamon Deacons enter the week with a 3-0 record after posting a sweep over Kent State in their opening series this past weekend. The leading hitter for Wake Forest through three games is Willy Fox, who went 5-for-9 (.556) with two doubles, one triple and five RBI against KSU. Garrett Bullock, their scheduled starter for Sunday's game against the Toreros, is the leading pitcher after one series with a 1-0 record and an ERA of 1.80 as he gave up one run on five hits in 5.0 innings of work this past weekend. Wake Forest is under the direction of third-year head coach Rick Rembielak. During his time at Wake Forest, Rembielak has posted an overall record of 48-63. This past season, the Deamon Deacons finished with an overall record of 28-30, which was an 11-game improvement from their first-year under Rembielakl.

LAST TIME OUT: San Diego posted a 3-1 record against Virginia Commonwealth University this past week. In Thursday's game, both teams were knotted at 4-4 through 10 innings, when the game was suspended because of darkness. The teams resumed the game on Friday and Shane Buschini's run-scoring double lifted USD to the series opening win. In that game, Brain Matusz was again dominate on the mound for USD as he recorded 10 strikeouts in seven innings of work. Jordan Abruzzo, James Meador and Daniel Magness all recorded multiple hits for USD in the game. In game two, the Rams came out on top, 6-4, in 10 innings, marking the third consecutive game USD had gone into extra innings. Sean Nicol led the USD offense as he went 3-for-4 at the plate. In Saturday's game, the Toreros were involved in a slugfest and pounded out a season-high 23 hits, while out scoring the Rams 20-13. Justin Snyder was a perfect 5-for-5 with one RBI and two runs scored in leading the offense. On Sunday, the Toreros cruised to a 8-2 win as all but one USD batter recorded a hit in the game.

COUCH HAS DOMINATING PERFORMANCE: Junior right-hander Matt Couch had a dominating performance in Saturday's slugfest. He allowed three runs on six hits while striking out a career-high nine batters. Couch allowed his three runs over the first two innings, then retired 14 of his next 15 batters to close out his outing with a 17-run cushion, thanks to the USD offense. Couch threw in seven complete innings for the Toreros in picking up his second win of the season.

SNYDER GOES OFF...AGAIN: For the weekend, Justin Snyder was a solid force at the plate for the Toreros as he went 9-for-19 with one double, one stolen base, two RBI and six runs scored. Snyder began the series 0-for-9, then bounced back going 8-for-8 including a 5-for-5 performance in Saturday's slugfest. This marks the second consecutive week Snyder has led the USD offense. Over the past two weeks, Snyder is 18-for-33 (.545) with one double, three RBI and eight runs scored. On the season, Snyder leads the team with his .441 batting average, team-best 26 hits, has three doubles, one home run and five RBI.

TORERO SKIPPER Rich Hill: San Diego's Rich Hill has built the USD Toreros into one of the most successful Division I baseball programs on the West Coast. The 2007 spring season will be Hill's 20th year as a head coach at the collegiate level, and ninth at USD, having enjoyed 16 winning seasons in 19 years. Since taking over at USD in 1999, Hill has been remarkable in leading the Toreros to eight consecutive winning campaigns, rewriting the school record book en route to claiming back-to-back West Coast Conference Championship titles in 2002 and 2003. Under his leadership San Diego has averaged 33 wins per season, including winning a school record 39 games in 2002, a year in which Hill was honored by his peers as the West Coast Conference Coach of the Year. In 2006, Hill led USD to its highest national ranking in program history at No. 8, as well as USD's first-ever at-large berth into the NCAA Regionals.

THE POLLS: The University of San Diego baseball team held steady and moved up in the latest top-25 polls after posting a 3-1 record against Virginia Commonwealth University this past week. The Toreros remain at No. 18 in the latest Baseball America top-25 poll and move up one spot in the latest Collegiate Baseball top-30 poll to No. 21. This marks the third consecutive week that the Toreros have appeared in the national polls. Wake Forest is not ranked in any of the polls.

TORERO BATS EXPLODE IN SATURDAY'S WIN: On Saturday, the Toreros bats exploded for the second consecutive week as they recorded a season-high 23 hits in picking up a 20-13 win over VCU. Justin Snyder went 5-for-5, with one RBI, Logan Gelbrich went 4-for-5 with one RBI and two runs scored and both Josh Romanski and Daniel Magness went 3-for-4. Both Shane Buschini and Jordan Abruzzo each recorded multiple hits on the day as well to help lead the USD offense.

MR. STRIKEOUT: Sophomore left-hander Brian Matusz has been a strikeout machine for the Toreros through the early party of the season. Matusz has recorded a team-best 44 strikeouts in only 24.2 innings of work, just under two strikeouts an inning. On the season, Matusz has an overall record of 2-0 with an ERA of 2.19.

MAGNESS BREAKING OUT: Senior first baseman Daniel Magness finally had a break out weekend at the plate for the Toreros. This past week, Magness went 7-for-15 (.467) with one double and five RBI. On the season, Magness has moved his batting average up to .300 with 12 hits, one double and nine RBI.

NICOL SWINGS IT WELL: Shortstop Sean Nicol had a solid week at the plate for the Toreros. The sophomore transfer from the University of Portland, went 7-for-17 (.412) with two doubles, one triple and three RBI. On the season, Nicol has moved his batting average up to .306 with 15 hits, two doubles, one triple, two home runs and seven RBI.

GELBRICH STILL LOOKING SOLID AT THE PLATE: Junior catcher Logan Gelbrich had his second consecutive solid outing at the plate for the Toreros. Gelbrich went 7-for-17 (.412) with two RBI and two runs scored. Over the last two weeks, Gelbrich has hit .400 (12-for-30) with one double, one home run and five RBI. Gelbrich has also been a solid force behind the plate for the Toreros as he has been serving as USD's starting catcher, only committing two fielding errors in the past seven games.

NOTES ON POSITION PLAYERS

Daniel Magness, SR, 1B - Magness had a huge weekend as he went 7-for-15 (.467) with one double and five RBI. On the season, Magness has moved his batting average up to .300 with 12 hits, one double and nine RBI.

Justin Snyder, JR, 2B - Snyder had another monster weekend as he went 9-for-19 with one double, one stolen base, two RBI and six runs scored. Snyder began the series 0-for-9, then bounced back going 8-for-8 including a 5-for-5 performance in Saturday's slugfest. He leads the team with his .441 batting average and team-best 26 hits.

Sean Nicol, SO, SS - Nicol went 7-for-17 (.412) with two doubles, one triple and three RBI this past week. On the season, Nicol has moved his batting average up to .306 with 15 hits, two doubles, one triple, two home runs and seven RBI.

Kevin Hansen, JR, 3B - Hansen has a .308 batting average, has 16 hits, two doubles, one triple and five RBI on the season.

James Meador, FR, LF - Meador had a productive weekend at the plate for USD as he went 3-for-9 (.333) with two RBI. On the season, Meador is hitting .222 with eight hits and five RBI.

Josh Romanski, SO, CF - Romanski had a good week at the plate for the Toreros as he went 6-for-18 (.333) with one double, one triple and three RBI.

Shane Buschini, SR, RF - Buschini recorded his team-leading fourth home run of the season in Saturday's win over VCU, and he drove in the game winning run to claim the series opener. On the season, he is hitting .288 with 15 hits, three doubles, four home runs and 12 RBI.

Logan Gelbrich, JR, C - Gelbrich went 7-for-17 (.412) with two RBI and two runs scored this past week. He is the team's second leading hitter with a .388 batting average, has 19 hits, two doubles, one home run and 10 RBI.

Jordan Abruzzo, SR, DH - Abruzzo went 6-for-17 (.353) with one double, one triple and two RBI this past weekend. On the season, Abruzzo leads the team in RBI with 15, has three home runs, four doubles and 20 hits.