May 2, 2007
After a tough week of final exams and shortened practice schedules, the Lions will play their second straight week of West Coast Conference baseball on the road at Gonzaga. Following the three-game series with the second-place Bulldogs, the Lions will face cross-town foe No.17 Cal State Fullerton in non-conference road action Tuesday. Game times at Gonzaga are 6:30 p.m. Friday and 1:00 p.m. on both Saturday and Sunday. The Tuesday match-up at 17th-ranked Cal State Fullerton is slated for a 6:00 p.m. first pitch. All games will be covered on Lions' All-Access audio and Gametracker at www.LMULions.com.
LMU is one of five teams remaining in the hunt for a WCC Championship Series berth with just six games left in league play. But with the fourth place Lions facing second place Gonzaga on the road this weekend, LMU will need a series sweep against the Bulldogs to remain alive. Gonzaga currently sits three games ahead of LMU in the WCC standings, tied for second place with 14th-ranked Pepperdine at 10-5.
TUESDAY TILT WITH TITANS
LMU will break from WCC action Tuesday for its only match-up of the season with 17th-ranked Cal State Fullerton. The Lions will head to Goodwin Field, where they have posted wins over the Titans the last two seasons. In both the 2005 and 1006 match-ups in Fullerton, the Titans were the top-ranked team in the nation.
*With a series win over Santa Clara last weekend, the Lions secured WCC series victories over all three Bay Area schools.
*The Lions did not play a Tuesday match-up this week, focusing instead on final exams. Graduation ceremonies will be held on campus Saturday, while the Lions are at Gonzaga. LMU had to take final exams in the middle of two tough WCC road trips.
*Senior DeAndre Miller hit .500 last week, going 8-for-16 over the four games. Miller added three RBI, three runs scored, and a stolen bases. The WCC leader in walks, Miller drew three last week and was perfect defensively in center field.
*Despite dropped the WCC series last weekend to San Francisco, the Bulldogs sit in a tie with 14th-ranked Pepperdine for second place in the current conference standings.
*The Bulldogs started conference play on a high note, handing ninth-ranked San Diego its only two WCC losses during the opening weekend of play.
*Projected Saturday starter Clayton Mortensen shares the WCC Pitcher of the Week honors with LMU's Brian Wilson this week. Mortensen was also named InsidePitching.com West Region Pitcher of the Week after throwing a complete game, four-hit shutout San Francisco last weekend. Mortensen had 10 strikeouts in the outing.
*After a three-game Big West sweep at the hands of UC Riverside, Cal State Fullerton dropped out of Baseball America's top-25 poll for the first time since 2004. The Titans are still ranked in other national polls, including 17th in the Rivals.com poll.*The Titans play at Pepperdine Wednesday and then host UC Santa Barbara before facing LMU next Tuesday.*Cal State Fullerton enters the weekend in a three-way tie for fourth place in the Big West Conference standings.
Congratulations to the Lions who will graduate this Saturday. Some will walk with the Class of 2007 on campus, some will stay with the team in Spokane, Wash., but all are to be recognized for an academic job well done:
Blake Feaser, communication studies
Michael Glomb, business administration
Elvis Herrera, television production
A.J. LaMonda, natural science
Daniel Macias, business administration
Ezequiel Ruvalcaba, civil engineering
LMU BASEBALL HONORED BY NCAA
The NCAA Division I Academic Performance Program cited LMU baseball with a public recognition award for having an Academic Program Rate (APR) score that ranks in the nation's top-10 percent among baseball programs. The NCAA recognized each sport's top-10 percent, and the Lions were among the nation's best in baseball. The APR measures academic factors including eligibility, retention, and graduation rates, and LMU baseball scored 992 out of 1,000. LMU was the only baseball program in the West to receive NCAA recognition. Other notable baseball honorees included Baylor, Rutgers, and North Carolina.
WILSON NAMED WCC PITCHER OF THE WEEK
Brian Wilson was named WCC Pitcher of the Week Monday after leading LMU to a WCC series win over Santa Clara this weekend on the road. Wilson made two appearances this weekend, earning the save Friday and the win Saturday in his scheduled start. On Friday, the Lions' sophomore entered the game as a pinch hitter with one out and one on in the ninth. His two-run home run over the fence in right field put the Lions up by one at 5-4. The right-handed Wilson then took the mound and threw a hitless ninth inning, including two strikeouts to earn the save. The next day, Wilson made his scheduled Saturday start and held the Broncos hitless until the sixth inning. He passed his previous career-high five strikeouts by just the third inning and finished with eight en route to the win. Santa Clara hit just .091 over 6.2 innings of work off Wilson on the weekend. He totaled 10 strikeouts and allowed just two hits. The Pitcher of the Week nod was the first career weekly conference honor for the sophomore. It is also the first Pitcher of the Week nod for the Lions this season. LMU has had the Player of the Week selection three times, with Eric Farris (twice) and Elvis Herrera bringing home the award. Wilson shares this week's Pitcher of the Week honor with Gonzaga's Clayton Mortensen, who threw a complete game shutout of San Francisco. Once finished with spring semester final exams, Wilson and the Lions will face Mortensen this weekend in Spokane, Wash.
SPECIAL WEEKEND WRAPS UP 2007 SEASON AT PAGE STADIUM
Mark your calendars now to join us for a special weekend of LMU baseball May 11-13. The weekend will mark the Lions' final three-game series of the regular season against WCC foe Portland. Prior to Saturday's 1:00 p.m. game, the Lions will honor their seven standouts who were named to the WCC's 40th Anniversary Team: Billy Bean, Miah Bradbury, Joe Ciccarella, Chris Donnels, Russ Noah, Billy Traber, and the late Tim Layana. Teammates of these Lions are invited to join us for the ceremony and luncheon. Reserve your ticket by calling 310-338-7638. The following day, LMU baseball will celebrate Senior Sunday and Mother's Day. The Lion seniors will be joined by their families in a pre-game ceremony on the field before their mothers and grandmothers toss out the ceremonial first pitch.
APRIL SHOWERS BRING ELVIS POWERS
Senior Elvis Herrera led the Lions during the month of April, hitting .340 (18-for-53) with 17 RBI. Herrera added two home runs, six doubles, and eight runs scored. He had a slugging percentage of .556 on the month and earned his first career WCC Player of the Week nod on April 16th.
SCHEDULE PITS LIONS AGAINST NATION'S BEST
By the time the regular season ends on May 15, the Lions will have played 21 games against teams that have been in the nation's top-25 this season.
HERRERA KING OF THE WCC
Elvis Herrera was named WCC Player of the Week after posting a career week that saw the senior lead the Lions to a 4-0 run, including a WCC series sweep of Saint Mary's on the road. Herrera hit .556 (10-for-18), including two three-hit contests on the week. He was a perfect 3-for-3 last Tuesday against San Diego State. Against Saint Mary's on Friday, Herrera drove in five runs, the first time a Lion tallied five RBI since March of 2006. Herrera finished the week with eight RBI and three doubles, giving the outfielder a .722 slugging and .556 on-base percentages. He added four runs scored and a stolen base, and was perfect defensively in left field. The selection was the first career pick for Herrera.
LIONS' STARTER KEEPS ON GOING
Starting pitcher Brad Meyers worked into at least the seventh inning for seven straight starts. Meyers threw 8.0 innings in the win over Cal Poly March 2nd and went on to work into the late innings against then-28th-ranked Tulane, UC Santa Barbara, UC Davis, San Francisco, ninth-ranked Pepperdine, and Saint Mary's.
SIX STRAIGHT YEARS OF STARTING WCC PLAY OUT RIGHT
LMU's WCC opening series win over San Francisco last weekend marked the sixth straight season the Lions have opened league play with a series win. The Lions have faced some tough opponents in those openers, drawing the defending WCC champion in three of those six seasons.
GLOMB, MACIAS SHINE IN MARCH
March featured some exciting wins for the Lions, and a pair of upperclassmen in junior infielder Michael Glomb and senior left-handed pitcher Daniel Macias were a big part of the run. Led by Glomb and Macias, the Lions swept Cal Poly, and took two of three from 28th-ranked Tulane, and San Francisco. Glomb hit .323 (20-for-62) with nine runs scored and three RBI on the month. Macias went 3-1 on the mound during March. He tallied 33.0 innings of work, finishing with an ERA of 4.09 and 17 strikeouts. His 8.0 innings against Cal Poly resulted in a combined shutout effort, which earned him a spot on the CBF National Honor Roll for the week.
DOVEL NAMED TO JOHNNY BENCH AWARD WATCH LIST
Junior Sean Dovel is one of 27 of the nation's top catchers on the initial Johnny Bench Award Watch List. The honor will be awarded to the nation's best catcher in June.
FARRIS EARNS SECOND WCC PLAYER OF WEEK HONORS
Fellow junior Eric Farris was named WCC Player of the Week after leading the Lions to a 3-1 week that featured the road series win over 28th-ranked Tulane. Over the four games, Farris hit 9-for-19 (.474) with five stolen bases, six runs scored, and three RBI. In the Lions' two wins over Tulane, Farris went 7-for-10 as the leadoff batter. The WCC Player of the Week nod was the second of the season for Farris, who earned the first weekly honor of the season after an opening weekend sweep of Sac State. It is his third career selection.
MACIAS AMONG NATIONAL PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Left-hander Daniel Macias was named to the College Baseball Foundation's (CBF) National Honor Roll after throwing an eight-inning shutout of Cal Poly to help LMU clinch the series against the Mustangs. The Lions went on to sweep Cal Poly on the road. Macias held the Mustangs scoreless while allowing six hits in his eight innings. Opponents hit just .207 off the senior, who struck out a pair in the combined shutout effort.
FARRIS FAIRS WELL IN FEBRUARY
LMU junior Eric Farris led the Lions in February, hitting .456 (31-for-68) to lead the West Coast Conference in batting average. The Lions' second baseman put up a .603 slugging percentage, a mark that also led the conference at month's end. Farris added a .500 on-base percentage and went 11-for-12 in stolen bases. For his efforts, the LMU Student-Athlete Advisory Committee voted Farris the Athlete of the Month.
LIONS FACE ONE OF TOUGHEST SCHEDULES
Boyd's World annually ranks the nation's toughest schedules, and LMU baseball is once again toward the top of the list. The Lions' non-conference schedule ranks as the 15th-toughest in the nation, while the overall campaign ranks 21st. The LMU schedule features 21 games against teams ranked in Baseball America's preseason top-50.
PAIR OF LIONS AMONG TOP-75 COLLEGE DRAFT PROSPECTS
LMU's Brad Meyers and Eric Farris are among Baseball America's preseason top-100 college draft prospects. Meyers made the top-30, while Farris checked in at No. 66. Baseball America's top-100 list details the predicted order of the nation's top college players eligible for the 2007 June MLB Draft. Meyers (No.30) was one of just four college players in California to make the top-30. He and Farris are two of the four WCC players to make the top-75.
MEYERS AMONG NATIONAL PITCHER, PLAYER OF THE YEAR CANDIDATES
Brad Meyers is a preseason candidate for college baseball's pitcher and player of the year. Meyers is among the nation's standout pitchers on the 2007 Roger Clemens and Brooks Wallace Award Watch Lists. The awards are presented annually to the national college baseball pitcher and player of the year.
25 YEARS OF LION BASEBALL AT PAGE STADIUM
When the first pitch was thrown on Opening Day against Sacramento State, it marked the beginning of the 25th season of LMU baseball at Page Stadium. Prior to the 1983 season, Page Stadium was built at the site of LMU's old baseball field and was completed with the Incentive Aid Foundation of Los Angeles providing the majority of the funding. It was named in honor of George C. Page, the president of the foundation. Assisting Mr. Page and the IAF in the stadium's completion was Maynard Kambak, father of LMU baseball alumnus Jeff Kambak. The first game in Page Stadium was played against Cal State Fullerton on March 19, 1983.
LIONS AMONG BASEBALL AMERICA'SPRESEASON PICKS
True, LMU baseball was picked to finish fourth in the competitive WCC by both the coaches and Baseball America this season. But, in its preseason WCC preview released this week, Baseball America points to some of the Lions' talent that may help them shake up those WCC predictions. Second baseman Eric Farris headlines that talent, as Baseball America picked the junior to be the WCC's Player of the Year in 2007. Baseball America also predicts that Farris will be the fourth player selected in this year's MLB Draft from the WCC. The publication picked LMU's Brad Meyers, A.J. LaMonda, and Sean Dovel to join Farris as first-team all-conference selections in 2007. Baseball America also picked the WCC's top-5 newcomers, and LMU freshman Angelo Songco ranked third.