April 20, 2006
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Following one of its best offensive outputs of the season Tuesday night in a 16-3 win over San Francisco State, the Santa Clara University baseball team will look to continue its power surge from the plate this weekend in a three-game set against WCC foe Loyola Marymount.
First pitch for Friday's series opener is set for 3 p.m. from George Page Stadium in Los Angeles. Game time for Saturday and Sunday's contests is 1 p.m.
The Broncos (21-17, 3-6 WCC) enter this weekend attempting to climb back into the thick of things in the conference race, having suffered a sweep at the hands of Pepperdine last week. SCU regained some of that lost momentum in Tuesday night's win, with Eric Newton hitting his WCC-leading 11th home run of the season with a fourth-inning grand slam. The San Jose native also drove in seven runs in the contest. Adding to the long ball display were Kris Watts, who hit his sixth of the year, and Donald Brandt, who not only went 3-for-5 from the plate with his first collegiate home run and three RBIs but also tossed three solid innings and struck out three to earn his third victory of the season.
Loyola Marymount (16-25, 4-5 WCC) will be riding some momentum of their own heading into the series as they knocked off the top-ranked team in the nation Tuesday in the Cal State Fullerton Titans. The 8-4 victory by the Lions came on the heels of a weekend which saw them drop two of three to first-place San Diego.
The Lions are led offensively by the power of Erik Johnson (.356, 12 doubles, three home runs, 35 RBIs) and Chris Pettit (.301, 19 doubles, three home runs, 32 RBIs). On the mound, Brad Meyers (5-4, 3.35 ERA) paces the staff while Roberto Torres has notched a pair of saves out of the bullpen.
Following the series, Santa Clara will return to the Bay Area for a short trip up U.S. 101 to Sunken Diamond Stadium where they will battle Stanford at 6 p.m. Tuesday evening. The Broncos return home for the weekend as they host the Saint Mary's Gaels in another weekend WCC series.