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WCC Baseball Weekly Notes

March 23, 2010

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NON-CONFERENCE PLAY CONTINUES THIS WEEK
The non-conference portion of the season continues with last week's slate of games highlighted by San Diego taking two of three from then #14 Rice and Loyola Marymount taking three of four from Fresno State. This week, San Diego will continue its tough string of opponents, playing a three-game series at #10 Coastal Carolina.

UPCOMING SCHEDULE

All Times PST

MONDAY, MARCH 22
TEAMS LOCATION
TIME
RECAP
Santa Clara at San Diego State San Diego, CA 6:00 PM
TUESDAY, MARCH 23
TEAMS LOCATION
TIME
RECAP
Santa Clara at San Diego State San Diego, CA 1:00 PM
California at San Francisco San Francisco, CA 2:00 PM
Saint Mary's at Sacramento State Sacramento, CA 2:00 PM
Cal State Fullerton at LMU Los Angeles, CA 3:00 PM
UC Riverside at San Diego San Diego, CA 3:00 PM
Gonzaga at Washington State Pullman, WA 5:30 PM
Pepperdine at USC Los Angeles, CA 6:30 PM
THURSDAY, MARCH 25
Gonzaga at Utah Valley Orem, UT 5:00 PM
FRIDAY, MARCH 26
San Francisco at UCSB Santa Barbara, CA 2:00 PM
Albany NY at LMU Los Angeles, CA 3:00 PM
Stony Brook at Pepperdine Malibu, CA 3:00 PM
Southern Utah at Portland Portland, OR 3:00 PM
UC Riverside at Saint Mary's Moraga, CA 3:00 PM
San Diego at #10 Coastal Carolina Conway, SC 3:00 PM
Gonzaga at Utah Valley Orem, UT 5:00 PM
Princeton at Santa Clara Santa Clara, CA 6:00 PM
SATURDAY, MARCH 27
Albany NY at LMU (DH) Los Angeles, CA 11:00 AM
San Diego at #10 Coastal Carolina Conway, SC 11:00 AM
Gonzaga at Utah Valley Orem, UT 12:00 PM
Stony Brook at Pepperdine Malibu, CA 1:00 PM
San Francisco at UCSB Santa Barbara, CA 1:00 PM
Southern Utah at Portland Portland, OR 1:00 PM
UC Riverside at Saint Mary's Moraga, CA 1:00 PM
Princeton at Santa Clara (DH) Santa Clara, CA 1:00 PM
SUNDAY, MARCH 28
San Diego at #10 Coastal Carolina Conway, SC 9:00 AM
Albany NY at LMU (DH) Los Angeles, CA 1:00 PM
Stony Brook at Pepperdine Malibu, CA 1:00 PM
San Francisco at UCSB Santa Barbara, CA 1:00 PM
Southern Utah at Portland Portland, OR 1:00 PM
UC Riverside at Saint Mary's Moraga, CA 1:00 PM
Princeton at Santa Clara Santa Clara, CA 1:00 PM

AROUND THE WCC

WCC Rawlings Pitcher of the Week: Matt Hauser, USD:
Hauser picked up a win and a save against #14 Rice. Overall, he tossed in 3.1 innings in both appearances, striking out four while allowing just one hit and zero runs.

Also nominated: Aaron Griffin, LMU; Matt Lujan, USF

WCC Rawlings Player of the Week: Matt Koch, LMU
Koch went 7-for-18 (.389) with two doubles, three home runs, and four RBI to help the Lions go 4-1 on the week to extend his hitting streak to eight games with five homers in that span.

Also nominated: Beau Fraser, POR; Tony Strazzara, USD; Connor Bernatz, USF

WCC Teams Garner Preseason Rankings
San Diego and Pepperdine were each listed among the nation's elite in numerous rankings heading into the 2010 campaign. The Toreros have been ranked in several publications, with the highest ranking coming in the Baseball America preseason poll, that had San Diego at No. 19. Collegiate Baseball ranked the Waves at No. 34 heading into the season, while Gonzaga received votes in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches poll.

San Diego
Baseball America - No. 19
USA TODAY/ESPN - No. 23
Collegiate Baseball - No. 24
NCBWA - No. 24

Pepperdine
Collegiate Baseball - No. 34USA TODAY/ESPN - Receiving Votes
NCBWA - Receiving Votes

Gonzaga
USA TODAY/ESPN - Receiving Votes

WCC's Preseason All-Americans
Several WCC standouts were tabbed for 2010 preseason All-American honors. After winning the Triple Crown last year, Saint Mary's Troy Channing was tabbed a Louisville Slugger preseason second team All-American and was ranked No. 6 on the Rivals.com power rankings for third basemen. Santa Clara's Geoff Klein and Tommy Medica were both named honorable mention preseason All-America catchers by Ping! Baseball.

Two Players Named To Stopper Of The Year Watch List
Gonzaga junior right hander Cody Martin and Portland junior right hander Zach Varce were both named to this year's Stopper of the Year Watch List.

This marks Martin's second time being nominated to the list as he also made the midseason watch list as well. Last year, Martin posted a 3.07 ERA while going 5-4 with six saves and 68 strikeouts in 58.2 innings. In his freshman season, he set the school record for saves in a season with nine.

Last season, Varce led the league with a 2.69 ERA and tied for the league lead with nine saves, which also tied the school record. Posting a 3-5 record, he held opposing batters to an average of .249 and had 62 strikeouts in 60.1 innings.

The Boys of Summer
This past summer, many WCC baseball players took part in summer leagues all across the country with many receiving All-Star recognition and individual rewards. Below is a list of all the WCC players receiving recognition.

Alaska Baseball League
Jonathan Johnson, LMU - Gold Glove
Drew Heid, GON - MVP
Ryan Carpenter, GON - All-Star

Cal Ripken League
Jonathan Abrahamson, USF - All-Star, Co-Pitcher of the Year
Ryan Mulligan, SMC - All-Star

Cape Cod
Kyle Blair, USD - All-Star

Hawaii Collegiate
Mark Anderson, SMC - All-Star
Tyler Brubaker, PEP - All-Star
Ricky Villarreal, PEP - All-Star
Joe Vierra, LMU - All-Star
Case Miyahara, LMU - All-Star

New York Collegiate
Miles Silverstein, PEP - All-Star
Brad Jesernig, PEP - All-Star

Northwoods League
Zach Varce, POR - All-Star
Riley Henricks, POR - All-Star
Troy Channing, SMC - Rising Star (Rivals.com)
Aaron Gates, PEP - All-Star
Chris Engell, USD - Silver Slugger Award

Prospect League
Nate Johnson, PEP - All-Star

USF's Nino Giarratano named to USA Baseball Coaching Staff
This will mark the second stint with Team USA for Giarratano, following his work as an assistant coach on Rob Walton's Collegiate National Team staff in 2008. That year, the team won the Gold Medal with a 12 inning victory over Japan and finished the season undefeated at 24-0. He joins Bill Kinneberg (Utah), Dave Serrano (Cal State Fullerton), and Ed Blankmeyer (St. John's). Giarratano is entering his 12th season with the Dons after guiding them to a share of third place last year.

San Diego Picked To Finish First In 2010 WCC Preseason Poll
San Diego was picked as the favorite to win this year's WCC regular season title in the 2010 preseason baseball poll, as voted on by the head coaches in the conference. The Toreros received six first place votes for a total of 48 points and are ranked 24th in Collegiate Baseball's preseason poll. Pepperdine was picked second with 38 points and is also receiving national recognition, ranked 34th in Collegiate Baseball's preseason poll. San Francisco totaled 33 points for third, while 2009 WCC Champion Gonzaga got one first place vote for 29 points to finish fourth, just edging out 2009 WCC runner-up Loyola Marymount, who received 28 points for fifth. Rounding out this year's preseason poll are Santa Clara, who received the last first place vote with 20 points, Saint Mary's with 17 points, and Portland with 11 points. The Toreros also placed the most number of players on the preseason all-conference team with five players being selected, including 2009 WCC Player of the Year, James Meador.

WCC Baseball Preseason Poll
1. San Diego - 48 (6)
Pepperdine - 38
3. San Francisco - 33
4. Gonzaga - 29 (1)
5. LMU - 28
6. Santa Clara - 20(1)
7. Saint Mary's - 17
8. Portland -11
(first place votes)

The 2009 WCC Baseball Season at a Glance
The West Coast Conference ended the season ranked in the top half of the NCAA RPI rankings, coming in at No. 11, finishing ahead of the Western Athletic (WAC) and Big Ten conferences ... Gonzaga University received the WCC's only bid to the NCAA Tournament by virtue of winning the WCC Baseball Championship Series against Loyola Marymount. The regular season and championship series title were the first in program history as the Zags finished ranked 22nd in the country according to Baseball America ... Half of the WCC schools finished with even or winning records against nationally ranked non-conference opponents, led by LMU, who finished with a 6-2 record ... Saint Mary's Troy Channing finished a historical year by becoming just the third player in conference history to win the Triple Crown. Channing led all freshmen in the country in home runs and RBI per game on his way to earning numerous accolades including being named to NCBWA and Baseball America All-America teams, the Louisville Slugger Freshman All-America team and being named a finalist for the Dick Howser Trophy as well as the WCC Freshman of the Year ... The WCC had 24 players chosen in the MLB First Year Player Draft, the second most in league history, led by LMU's Angelo Songco, who was picked in the 4th round (127th overall) ... Songco was also a semifinalist for the Golden Spikes Award ... The WCC had numerous players on preseason watch lists, including four pitchers on the Stopper of the Year list and eight players on the Wallace Award Watch list ... Four players were also placed on the 2009 CoSida Academic All District VII Team, the most of any conference in the district ... San Diego's James Meador won the Player of the Year award


WCC TEAM NOTES

SCHOOL TEAM NOTES

Overall Record: 8-11
WCC Record: 0-0
  • Gonzaga picked up a win over BYU (9-7), before losing to the Cougars (3-2) and dropping three against #15 UC Irvine (6-4, 13-1, 8-5).

  • The Zags battled to bring the potential tying-run to the plate in ninth inning in three different games but was turned away by a couple nice defensive plays and suffered losses.

  • OF Drew Heid was consistent all week for Gonzaga as he registered two hits in four of the five games last week. On the season, he has collected 33 hits, which leads the league as he has gone hitless in just two of the 19 games this season.

  • 1B Andy Hunter is also one of the top hitters in the league, ranking fifth in hits (27), second in RBI (24), and fourth in home runs (5).

  • Gonzaga travels to Washington State (3/23) before a three-game set at Utah Valley (3/25-27).
  • Overall Record: 8-11
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • LMU picked up wins over Long Beach State (6-4) and Fresno State (12-5, 4-3, 5-2), before losing the series finale to the Bulldogs (16-10).

  • C Matt Koch was named WCC Rawlings Player of the Week after going 7-for-18 (.389) with two doubles, three home runs, and four RBI. Against Fresno State, he went yard in three of the four games and is currently riding an eight-game hitting streak with five homers in that span.

  • OF Ryan Hawthorne is also riding an eight-game hitting streak and he has had multi-hit performances in four of those eight contests.

  • RHP Chris Eusebio picked up his third win of the season against FSU and is now tied for the league lead with a 3-0 record on the season.

  • The Lions host Cal St. Fullerton (3/23) and have a four-game set against Albany NY (3/26-28).

  • Overall Record: 6-12
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • The Waves went winless last week, getting swept at #23 Stanford (9-8, 10-0, 11-6).

  • In the series, RHP Cole Cook delivered his fifth consecutive quality start to begin the season, allowing two earned runs through seven innings Friday night at Stanford. Cook has pitched past the sixth inning in all 13 of his collegiate career starts

  • Pepperdine has one of the strongest pitching rotations in the league as all three weekend starters have pitched a complete game this season. Cook, LHP Matt Bywater, and LHP Robert Dickmann have all gone the distance, and all three rank in the top 10 in the league in innings pitched, while Bywater and Cook rank in the top 10 in strikeouts.

  • Pepperdine is on the road this week at USC (3/23), before hosting Stony Brook for a three-game series (3/26-28).
  • Overall Record: 12-6
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • The Pilots dropped the series opener against Utah Valley (8-7), before taking the next two (10-4, 3-1) for the series win.

  • In the the first win over Utah Valley, OF Garrett Queen went 3-for-5 to lead the team and is now on a six-game hitting streak.

  • C Beau Fraser registered two hits in all three games last week and drove in nine RBI. He went yard in each of the first two, including a grand slam in the second. For the season, he is hitting .407, tied for fourth in the league.

  • RHP Kyle Kraus earned his third win of the season and is now 3-0, tied for the league lead.

  • Portland hosts Southern Utah for a three-game set this week (3/26-28).
  • Overall Record: 5-9
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • The Gaels won against San Jose State (6-2), before getting swept at Tulane (4-1, 9-6, 8-2).

  • 1B Troy Channing went yard twice last week, including a grand slam in game two against Tulane. He has now hit a home run in four of his last eight games and is tied for second in the league.

  • RHP Martin Agosta earned his second win against San Jose State to remain perfect on the season. He tossed in four innings, striking out three and allowing just two runs.

  • IF Chris Murphy registered a hit in each game last week and has now gotten a hit in six of his last seven contests.

  • The Gaels play at Sacramento St. (3/23), before hosting a three-game stint against UC Riverside (3/26-28).
  • Overall Record: 11-10
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • San Diego fell to #15 UC Irvine (9-1), before winning the first two against #14 Rice (6-4, 6-5) and losing the third (9-8).

  • RHP Matt Hauser was named WCC Rawlings Picher of the Week after picking up a win and a save against Rice. Overall, he tossed in 3.1 innings in both appearances, striking out four while allowing just one hit and zero runs.

  • 2B Tony Strazzara is one of the hottest bats in the league right now, as he is on an eight-game hitting streak, including going for multi-hits in five of those games. He also had the walk-off RBI single in the second win over the Owls. OF James Meador also had a good week, going 7-for-16 with seven RBI and leads the league with 24 RBI on the season.

  • The Toreros host UC Riverside (3/23), before heading on the road to play a three-game series at #10 Coastal Carolina (3/26-28).
  • Overall Record: 11-10
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • San Francisco defeated Houston (3-2), before losing the first two against UC Riverside (8-5, 10-1) and winning the third (9-3).

  • LHP Matt Lujan (3-1) earned his third win of the season against the Highlanders, going five innings with four strikeouts and allowing zero runs off just two hits. He is one of just five pitchers in the league with three wins this season.

  • 1B Nick Balog reached base safely in all four games last week and is riding a team-high six game hitting streak, collecting three doubles in that span.

  • Freshman OF Jared Denham is having a fantastic start to the 2010 season. In 18 games played, he is leading the team with a .411 batting average (23-for-56) and has added a teamleading nine doubles, 10 RBI, 11 runs scored and a stolen base.

  • The Dons host Cal (3/23), before traveling to UCSB for a three-game series (3/26-28).
  • Overall Record: 7-10
    WCC Record: 0-0
  • Santa Clara lost the first three of a four-game series at San Diego State (7-5, 7-0, 13-6) last week.

  • C Geoff Klein was recently added to the watch list for the 2010 Coleman Company-Johnny Bench Award, annually given to the nation's top collegiate catcher. On the season, he is hitting .343 with 18 RBI and three home runs.

  • OF Tommy Medica currently has the hottest bat in the league, as he is riding a 10-game hitting streak, with an impressive six multi-hit performances in that span. He is currently among the league leaders in hits (T2nd-29), runs scored (T3rd-18), RBI (T4th-18), and stolen bases (T6th-5).

  • The Broncos will conclude its four-game set at San Diego State (3/23), before hosting a four-game series against Princeton (3/26-28).