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USF Wins Third Consecutive Series, Looks To Continue Success At #22 Pepperdine

April 4, 2006

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DONS MEET WAVES THIS WEEK: USF is on the road again, this time traveling south to Malibu to take on WCC foe Pepperdine. Friday's contest is set to begin at 3:00 PM with Saturday's and Sunday's start times at 1:00 PM.

LAST WEEK: On Tuesday, the Dons beat No. 15 Oregon State 8-2 behind sophomore Brian Anderson who pitched 7.2 innings allowing two runs on eight hits with three strikeouts and one walk. Senior shortstop Andrew Smith hit the first home run of his career as he went 2-for-4 with two RBI. Senior outfielder Stefan Gartrell was 2-for-4 with a double, and junior catcher Jonathan Norfolk also had two hits for the Dons. Sophomore Mitchell Bialosky slammed his fourth homerun of the season, a two-run shot in the sixth.

Over the weekend, USF took two of three from Santa Clara in their first West Coast Conference series of the year. Friday's game was rained out and made up as part of a double-header on Saturday. USF took game one 6-2. Junior left-hander Scott Cousins, in just his fourth start, threw a 122-pitch complete game against the Broncos, holding them to just two runs (both earned) off eight hits with seven strikeouts and only one walk. USF fell in game two 4-3. On Sunday, the Dons rebounded, taking the series with a 6-2 win. Senior right-hander Patrick McGuigan (7-1) tossed another gem for USF, allowing two runs (one earned) off 10 hits in seven innings with a pair of strikeouts and did not walk a batter.

HEAD COACH Nino Giarratano WINS 200TH GAME AT USF: With the win over Oregon State on Tuesday, Nino Giarratano, the 2005 West Coast Conference Coach of the Year after leading USF to the highest win tally in program history (38) earned his 200th career win, and is just the fifth coach in Dons athletic history to do so on the Hilltop. A three-time national junior college coach of the year, Giarratano has 512 total wins after recording 310 wins in eight years as a junior college head coach at Trinidad State Junior College in Trinidad, Co. and Yavapai Community College in Prescott, AZ.

USF ON A WINNING ROLL: USF has won 14 of its last 16 games after posting a 5-11 mark to start the season and has won five consecutive series (Georgetown 3-0; at New Mexico, 2-1; Utah Valley State, 2-0; at Oral Roberts, 3-0, at Santa Clara, 2-1). The series victory over the Broncos is USF's third consecutive series victory over their WCC foe. The Dons are outscoring their opponents 30-to-7 in the ninth inning and beyond and are 2-0 in extra inning games. USF's longest win streak this season was seven games (03/21-04/01) and they also own a six game streak (03/10-03/18). Only one loss seperates those two streaks. USF owns an 8-1 record at Benedetti Diamond this season improved their road record to .500 at 11-11.


SCOUTING #22 PEPPERDINE: Pepperdine has played in the NCAA Regionals the past two seasons and have been picked as a sleeper team to compete again this year. In 2005, they finished the season 41-23 (21-9 WCC) and were West Coast Conference Champions for the second year in a row. They return 24 letterwinners from last year's club that concluded the year ranked No. 23 nationally. The Waves are currently 20-13 (1-2 WCC). Leading Pepperdine at the plate is junior catcher Chad Tracy who is batting .348 in 33 games played. He has 46 hits (six doubles, three triples, five homeruns), 28 RBI, 24 runs scored, a .553 slugging percentage and is 7-for-8 in stolen bases. Closely following him is senior infielder David Uribes. Uribes is batting .333 with 45 hits (five doubles, one homerun), 14 RBI, 31 runs scored and is 17-for-19 in stolen bases. On the mound, sophomore right-hander Barry Enright is 6-1 with a 4.83 ERA with 34 strikeouts and 13 walks in 10 starts.

LAST MEETING: Pep 7, at USF 4 (4/1/05); Pep 13, at USF 4 (4/2/05); at USF 8, Pep 2 (4/3/05); at Pep 5, USF 0 (5/20/05); USF 8, at Pep 3 (5/12/05); at Pep 4, USF 2 (5/22/05)

LAST TIME AGAINST THE DONS: USF took only two of six games in 2005, one each in two series. In their first win (4/3/05), the Dons scored eight runs to the Waves' two. Sophomore left-hander Scott Cousins picked up the win with 8.1 innings of work, limiting the Waves to two runs off five hits while striking out five. After giving up a two out single to in the first inning, Cousins retired the next 15 Pepperdine batters before an infield single in the top of the sixth inning. The Dons scored eight again on May 21, 2005 against the Waves, winning 8-3. USF erupted for 14 base hits, including home runs from junior outfielder Stefan Gartrell and sophomore catcher Blake Nelson.

Patrick McGuigan CONTINUES TO CLIMB THE RECORD CHARTS: Senior right-handed pitcher Patrick McGuigan posted a 1-0 record last week, earning a 6-2 victory over Santa Clara on Sunday (4/2/06). The win, his 17th career, moved him into a tie with Jerry Eilers (62-64) for second place all-time. Hall-of-Famer Dana Hendershott (1968-71) is the leader with 22. He currently owns third place in appearances with 77 and with 151 career strikeouts, the USF career saves leader needs just five more to move into a tie of tenth place on the `K' list with Dennis Collier (1975-76). On the season, McGuigan owns a 7-1 record with a 2.87 ERA, allowing 27 runs (20 earned) off 59 hits and has struck out 47 and walked just 10 in 62.2 innings.

Scott Cousins HELPING OUT EVERYWHERE: Overcoming an arm injury earlier this season, junior outfielder/pitcher Scott Cousins is on fire both at the plate and throwing to it. As a batter, Cousins is batting .313 with 36 hits (four doubles, two triples, one homerun), 16 RBI, and 27 runs scored. He also leads the team with 12 stolen bases (out of 15 attempted). On the mound, Cousins is 2-0 with a 4.28 ERA in six appearances (four starts). In 27.1 innings pitched, Cousins has 18 strikeouts, compared to just eight walks. As an outfielder, the junior has played outstanding defense, responsible for 33 put-outs, nine assists, and only four errors, for a .913 fielding percentage.

Stefan Gartrell CONTINUES TO PRODUCE: Senior outfielder Stefan Gartrell continues to produce for USF at the plate and leads the club in RBI with 28 and now has 97 in his career. The San Francisco native needs just seven more to move into sole possession of 10th place on the career list, supplanting Gregg Omori (1998-99). In Saturday's first game last week, Gartrell extended his hitting streak to 10 games before being stopped in game two. Gartrell is batting .345 on the season with 38 hits (nine doubles, one triple, and two homeruns), and has scored 22 runs. The senior is leading the team in slugging percentage at .500 and is second in on-base percentage at .451. He is also 6-for-6 in stolen bases. In the field, Gartrell has been responsible for 63 put-outs, four assists, and only has one error, for a .985 fielding percentage.

Lucas DeLong LEADS TEAM IN LONG BALLS: Junior outfielder Lucas DeLong hit his team-leading sixth home run of the season at Santa Clara (4/1) and now has 14 career long balls. For the season, DeLong is batting .205 with 16 hits (one double and six homeruns), has 12 RBI and 12 runs scored and one stolen base. In the field, DeLong, one of many fabulous outfielders on the Dons roster, has 52 put-outs, one assist, and only one error for a .981 fielding percentage.

Andrew Smith IS NICELY RECOVERED FROM INJURY: After sitting out the beginning of the season, senior short-stop Andrew Smith is having a successful year. Playing in 13 games with nine starts, Smith is batting .314 with 11 hits, one being his first career homerun (3/27 vs. Oregon State). He is also 5-for-8 in stolen bases and has a .962 fielding percentage.

Joey Railey HAD FABULOUS MARCH: For March, Railey started all of USF's 15 games and batted an impressive .379 (22-for-58). He had five RBI, four doubles, scored 13 runs and successfully stole six-of-seven bases attempted. Railey slugged .448 and led the team in OBP at .493. Railey had eight multiple hit games, twice pounding out three hits. He was 3-for-4 at home against Georgetown (3/11) with three singles. He also went 3-for-4 in a loss at New Mexico (3/19). In that game, the sophomore had a double and two RBI. Railey hit .422 (19-45) against right-handers and was impressive in a leadoff position at .516 (16-31). With RBI opportunities he didn't disappoint, batting .444 (4-9) and with runners on third with less than two outs, he was 2-for-2.

WCC LEADERS: Nine different Dons are among the Top-10 in the West Coast Conference in 17 statistical categories. Leading the way with seven Top-10 stats is Patrick McGuigan. The senior is first in wins (7), tied for first in shutouts (1) and complete games (2), fourth in innings pitched (62.2), fifth in strikeouts (47), eighth in ERA (2.87), and tenth in OBA (.247). Coming in with four each are Aaron Poreda (second in ERA {1.99}, fifth in games started {9}, and eighth in strikeouts {40} and innings pitched {54.1}), Joey Railey (first in walks {25}, second in on base percentage {.507}, fourth in batting average {.393}, and seventh in stolen bases {11}), Scott Cousins (fourth in stolen bases {12}, fifth in walks {22}, seventh in runs scored {27}, and tenth in triples {2}). Stefan Gartrell adds two categories of his own, eighth in RBI (28) and ninth in on base percentage (.457). Adding one each are Lucas DeLong (tied for fourth with six homeruns), Jeff Gordon (tied for fifth with three saves), John Quine (tied for seventh with two saves), and Brian Anderson (tied for first with one shutout).

Aaron Poreda NAMED WCC PITCHER OF THE WEEK FOR MARCH 19-25: For the third consecutive week, a Don earned WCC pitcher or player of the Week honors, this time the award going to sophomore Aaron Poreda. The left-hander continues to dazzle for the Dons as he tossed the first complete game of his career at Oral Roberts (3/25), allowing one run off five hits and struck out a career-high nine in collecting his second win of the season. Poreda leads the team with a miniscule 1.48 ERA, allowing just eight earned runs (12 unearned) and has a 2-3 record with 34 strikeouts, compared to just 10 walks, in 48.2 innings. Opponents are only batting .280 against him. The Moraga native has already surpassed his freshman strikeout (26) and innings (33.1) tallies.

Scott Cousins NAMED WCC PLAYER OF THE WEEK FOR MARCH 13-19: Scott Cousins helped USF post a 3-1 mark on the week, and led the Dons to a pair of wins over New Mexico on the road over the weekend. Cousins batted .500 (8-for-16) in four games, driving in seven runs and scoring five times. The junior began the series at UNM with a 3-for-5 performance, clubbing a triple and driving in three runs. Cousins went 2-for-4 in each of the next two contests in the series, scoring four times and hitting his first home run of the season on Sunday.

Patrick McGuigan NAMED WCC PITCHER OF THE WEEK FOR MARCH 6-12: Senior right-hander, Patrick McGuigan was been named the WCC Pitcher of the Week for March 6-12, 2006. The Hawaii native pitched a complete game shutout against Georgetown on Saturday (3/11), allowing just two hits - both singles - and struck out a career high 12 batters. His previous career high was seven, set earlier this year at Southern Utah (2/17). The 12 strikeouts are tied for third most in a single game by a Dons pitcher. The Don all-time saves leader is now tied for eighth (Jim Ross 74-76) on the win chart with 13. On Wednesday (3/8), he threw 1.2 innings of relief, allowing no runs on one hit while striking out one and not issuing a walk. McGuigan is now 4-1 (after a win in relief against New Mexico on Saturday) with a 3.67 ERA and 32 strikeouts.

USF ALUM DUSTIN DELUCCHI PLAYED FOR ITALY IN INAGURAL WORLD BASEBALL CLASSIC: Former USF star Dustin Delucchi patrolled the outfield for Italy in first round play, starting all three contests as the Italians went 1-2 in Pool D. Delucchi had his best game against Australia when he went 2-for-4 with two runs scored and one RBI.

DONS DOMINATE EAST COAST SCHOOLS: Since 2000, the Dons have played 13 East Coast schools and are 11-2 in that span with their latest three victories coming over Georgetown last weekend. In 2000, the Dons swept a double-header with Fairfield University (Connecticut) at Benedetti Diamond (8-3, 4-1). In 2002, USF played a two game series with Stony Brook University (New York) and came away with a split (4-7, 8-7). USF swept two games from Louisiana-Lafayette in 2004 (15-6, 6-0). In winning the Pepsi/Johnny Quick Classic in Fresno, the Dons played four East Coast schools, Beating Penn (7-0), Iona (10-1) and Penn State (6-1), but fell to Monmouth 3-5.

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).

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 dollar 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.