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USF Has Short Week, Playing Only Game Wednesday at Fresno State

Feb. 28, 2006

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DONS MEET BULLDOGS THIS WEEK: The Dons only game of the week is a road contest against the Bulldogs (7-8) of Fresno State at 6:35 PM on Wednesday. USF has the weekend off before traveling back to Fresno for two mid-week games, next Tuesday and Wednesday.

Scott Cousins MAKES 2006 PITCHING DEBUT: After only being able to play in the field and bat the first part of the season because of an arm injury, Cousins made his 2006 mound debut in Tuesday's game, an 8-4 loss to UC Davis. Despite the loss, the mound appearance was successful for the left-hander. He threw one inning of scoreless ball, retiring all three batters he faced. At the plate, Cousins is having a stellar year, batting .358 with 19 hits (tied for second), 14 runs (1st), two doubles, one triple and six RBI. The triple came in last Sunday's win over Sacramento State in the River City Classic.

Aaron Poreda EARNS FIRST WIN OF THE SEASON DROPS ERA TO BELOW 2.00: Sophomore left-hander Aaron Poreda earned his first victory of the year on Sunday, beating Sacramento State 6-2 in the River City Classic. Poreda threw 8.1 innings, allowing only two runs (none earned) off 11 hits and struck out four. The outing drops his ERA to a 1.85, which leads the team.

Tavo Hall STEPPING IT UP: Sophomore shortstop Tavo Hall had a good week last week, smacking four hits in two games, including a 3-for-5 day in the win over Sacramento State and adding a double in the loss to Washington state. For the year, Hall is batting .294 with 15 hits, two doubles, six RBI and 11 runs scored. He also has three stolen bases.

Lucas DeLong ADDS TO TEAM LEADING HOMERUN TOTAL: Junior outfielder Lucas DeLong added another homerun last week and now leads the team with four. The extra knock brings his career total to 12. Along with the lead in homeruns, DeLong is second in slugging percentage (.553), fourth in runs batted in (7) and total bases (21) and tied for third in runs scored (8).

Stefan Gartrell CONTINUES WITH HOT BAT: Senior outfielder Stefan Gartrell added to fire to his arsenal last weekend, coming away with two more hits, including an RBI double in the game against Sacramento State.. He leads the team in four offensive categories: slugging percentage (.646), RBI (15), doubles (7) and total bases (31) and, he is second in batting average (.396). Gartrell has also shown some speed on the base paths and is currently 3-for-3 in stolen bases.

Joey Railey ON FIRE: Sophomore infielder Joey Railey has started the season on a rather hot streak. He continues to lead the team in batting average (.420) and hits (21). He also has four doubles, a triple, ten RBI and has scored eight runs. He is second with 27 total bases and third on the team in slugging at .540. He also has two steals to his credit.

GAME #15 - FRESNO STATE BULLDOGSSCOUTING FRESNO STATE: The Bulldogs are 7-8 going into the mid-week contest against the Dons. After finishing the 2005 season 30-29 (2nd WAC), they have been tabbed to finish first in 2006. They return sophomore third baseman Beau Mills (.246, six doubles, two homeruns) who was named to the 2006 Wallace Award watch list. Leading the team offensively is sophomore outfielder Steve Susdorf, who is batting .327 with 13 runs scored, 16 hits, three doubles, five homeruns and 14 RBI. On the mound, junior right-handed pitcher Andy Underwood is 2-2 with a 2.77 ERA and 28 strikeouts. In their last game, the Bulldogs fell to Stanford 6-3 in the rubber match of a three game series.

LAST MEETINGS: USF 8, at Fresno St. 5 (3/10/05); USF 13, at Fresno St. 0 (3/12/05)

LAST TIME AGAINST THE DONS: With the 8-5 win on March 10, the Dons improved to 3-0 in the Pepsi/Johnny Quick Classic hosted by the Bulldogs. Sophomore left-handed pitcher Scott Cousins picked up the win in relief after throwing 4.1 innings, allowing only one run off four hits and added six strikeouts. All of this, coming after suffering a bruised rib the previous Monday. Outfielders, junior Stefan Gartrell and freshman Luke Sommer were 2-for-4 on the day. Sophomore catcher Daniel Morales and sophomore outfielder Lucas DeLong both had RBI's in the game.

USF met Fresno State for the Championship of the Pepsi/Johnny Quick Classic two days later and made a statement, taking first place with a 13-0 drubbing of the Bulldogs. Don senior right-handed pitcher Nick Pereira threw a complete game one-hit shutout and was named tournament MVP. Joining Pereira on the all-tournament team was senior infielder Royce Fukuroku, who hit .450 and collected seven base hits in two games against Fresno State. Junior outfielder Stefan Gartrell also made the list, batting .417 with four doubles, a home run, while freshman shortstop Tavo Hall hit .500 with seven RBI and a team-high eight runs scored.

Patrick McGuigan THROWS FIRST COMPLETE GAME: Senior right-handed pitcher Patrick McGuigan threw the first complete game of his career Friday, February 17 against Southern Utah. He also picked up his 12th career victory which puts him in a tie for ninth place overall in pitching wins for a Don. The hurler was a WCC Honorable Mention in 2005 after going 5-2 with a sparkling 1.66 ERA and striking out 50 in 54.1 innings. The 1.66 ERA was the lowest single-season mark in school history. He entered 2006 ranked fifth among USF career leaders in ERA at 2.64 and shares sixth place in appearances with 65. He is USF's career saves leader with 13.

Scott Cousins NAMED TO WALLACE PRE-SEASON WATCH LIST FOR COLLEGIATE BASEBALL PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Junior LHP/OF Scott Cousins was selected to the Wallace Award Watch List for the 2006 College Baseball Foundation's Player of the Year. Cousins is the first Don to make the preseason watch list since three-time All-American Tagg Bozied in 2001. Cousins emerged as one of the top two-way players on the West Coast last year with an outstanding sophomore campaign on the Hilltop. The left-hander posted an 8-5 record with a 2.86 ERA in 95.1 innings and struck out 76 batters with only 30 walks. The eight victories were the third most ever recorded by a Dons hurler. At the plate, the West Coast Conference Player of the Month for March was equally impressive, batting .309 with a team-high seven home runs and ranked second on the squad with 30 RBI. Cousins earned First Team All-WCC honors last season and earned the 2005 Dante Benedetti Award presented to the team MVP. Cousins was also named to Baseball America's pre-season All-Conference Team.

Stefan Gartrell NAMED TO BASEBALL AMERICA'S FAB 50: Senior Stefan Gartrell was named to the Fabulous 50 Seniors of 2006 by Baseball America. The outfielder came in at No. 40 after a stellar 2005 campaign. In an injury plagued season Gartrell still managed to hit a whopping .364 with 52 hits, five homeruns, and 41 RBI. He had a 15-game hit streak that stretched from February 23 to March 19 in which he had 21 hits. Gartrell was also named to Baseball America's pre-season All-Conference Team.

HEAD COACH Nino Giarratano NEARS 200TH VICTORY AT USF: The 2005 West Coast Conference Coach of the Year needs just 12 wins to reach the milestone of 200 victories as the head coach of the University of San Francisco. He currently has a total of 188. He will become just the fifth coach in Dons athletic history to surpass the 200 victory mark in the Green and Gold. Giarratano also needs just seven wins to reach 500 overall as a college coach, after recording 310 wins in 8 seasons as a junior college head coach at Trinidad State Junior College in Trinidad, Co. and Yavapai Community College in Prescott, AZ.

DONS RANKED IN PRE-SEASON TOP 40 FOR THE FIRST TIME IN 10 YEARS: Fresh off the most successful season in program history in 2005, USF Baseball earned national recognition and enters the upcoming season ranked No. 35 in the 2006 Collegiate Baseball Preseason Poll. The Dons set program records for wins (38), West Coast Conference victories (20) and ranked in the top-10 nationally in team ERA (2.86) and team fielding percentage (.976).

USF PICKED THIRD IN WEST COAST CONFERENCE PRE-SEASON POLL: After the best year in program history, the WCC coaches have taken notice and voted San Francisco into the third spot in the preseason baseball poll, giving them a total of 34 points. The Dons follow only last year's champ Pepperdine (48) and San Diego (42).

DANTE BENEDETTI CLASSIC: USF will host Cal Tuesday, April 25, 2006 at SBC Park in the inaugural Dante Benedetti Classic, celebrating the legacy of a giant in San Francisco youth and collegiate baseball. Benedetti, who coached USF for 16 years for an annual salary of one doller passed away in November of 2005 at the age of 86 after a long illness. The game will be the first college game ever played in the home park of the San Francisco Giants and will precede a night game against the New York Mets.