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USF Baseball Finishes Season With a Flourish

May 24, 2007

-Dons finish season with a flourish.

After a convincing 11-1 victory over Saint Mary¡¦s on Friday (5/11), USF took two ninth inning victories from their West Coast Conference and Bay Area rival Gaels. Heading into the bottom of the ninth on Saturday (5/12), the Dons and Gaels were tied 3-3, but USF used a late inning miscue by SMC¡¦s freshman catcher allowing the winning run to cross the plate. On Sunday (5/13), the Dons entered the ninth trailing 10-6. Senior center fielder Lucas DeLong was hit by a pitch to lead off the inning. Junior second baseman Joey Railey singled before senior left fielder Jonnie Knoble singled home DeLong. Railey and Knoble completed a double steal and another catcher miscue in the ninth cost the Gaels. Railey scored and Knoble advanced to third as SMC's junior catcher Ian Gordon threw the ball into left field. Knoble then scored on freshman third baseman Derek Poppert's sacrifice fly to right. With two outs, junior right fielder Luke Sommer put a sure out into the air, but SMC's senior left fielder Eric Cattoni started his celebration a little too soon, and dropped Sommer's easy fly ball. That error left the inning open as senior catcher Jon Norfolk stepped to the plate. In his final collegiate at bat, Norfolk battled with a 1-2 count to pound the ball over the right field fence to win the game.

-Seven Dons earn All-WCC HonorsoFirst Team Selections: Senior OF Jonnie Knoble (unanimous), senior C Jon Norfolk, junior 1B Mitchell Bialosky (unanimous) and junior LHP Aaron Poreda.oHonorable Mention: Senior RHP Jason Dufloth, junior IF Brian Chavez and freshman IF Derek Poppert.oFreshman Team Selection: IF Derek Poppert

-Dons honored at Baseball Banquet.oUSF baseball hosted it annual banquet celebrating the accomplishments of the 2007 season Sunday night at the Carnelian Room atop the Bank of America Building in downtown San Francisco. More than 150 people joined the Diamond Dons in celebrating the accomplishments during the 100th anniversary season.oSenior outfielder Jonnie Knoble captured team MVP honors (Dante Benedetti Award) and the Yellow Dog Award, presented to the top newcomer, was renamed the Jonnie Knoble Award.oJunior infielder Brian Chavez earned the Jermaine Clark award for best defense.oJunior infielder Tavo Hall won the Greg Moore Inspirational AwardoFreshman infielder Derek Poppert earned the Jonnie Knoble Top Newcomer Award (formerly the Yellow Dog award)oSenior RHP Jason Dufloth earned the Jesse Foppert Pitcher of the Year Award.

-Seniors say goodbye:

Nine seniors have played their final collegiate games on the Hill Top:

o1B/DH Chris Bacigalupi - Bacigalupi finished the season second on the team in on base percentage at .438, third in batting average at .338, and fourth in slugging percentage at .477. He completed his senior season with six doubles, a homerun and 13 RBI. He finished his two year career at USF with a .291 batting average, nine doubles, two homeruns and 19 RBI.

oRHP John Quine - Quine worked exclusively out of the bullpen in his two years as a Don, and finished senior season with a 4-2 record, 4.33 ERA with two saves and 51 strikeouts in 43.2 innings. His two year totals are: 8-5, 3.62 ERA, 84 strikeouts, 38 walks, and five saves in 87.1 innings pitched.

oRHP Jason Dufloth - As a starter this year, Dufloth went 5-4, 3.25 ERA in 15 starts. He struck out 43 and only walked 11 in 88.2 innings pitched. He was impressive in conference play, going 1-1, with a team leading 2.14 ERA, 20 strikeouts and only four walks in 42.0 innings pitched. He finishes his USF career 7-6 with 3.79 ERA and 78 strikeouts against 21 walks in 140 innings.

oLHP Cole Stipovich - As USF¡¦s left-handed specialist, Stipovich led all Dons hurlers with 30 appearances. In his two year stint, he finishes with a 4-4 record, two saves and 29 strikeouts against only six walks in 58.2 innings.

oUT Blake Nelson - This season, splitting time as a designated hitter, catcher and first baseman, Nelson finished 2007 with five doubles, four homeruns and 14 RBI. As a four year Don, Nelson finishes his career batting .279 with 127 hits (21 doubles, one triple, and seven homeruns), and 55 RBI.

oOF Lucas DeLong - DeLong spent his entire career on the Hill Top and finishes in a tie for 10th place all time on the home run charts with 17. His career numbers include 27 doubles, two triples, 72 RBI and 17 stolen bases. He earned the Peter Peletta Award at this year¡¦s Student Leadership Awards Ceremony for loyal service to the Athletic Department.

oUT Daniel Morales - In his first year as a two-way player, San Francisco native Morales was impressive. At the plate in 2007, he batted .365 with five doubles, four homeruns and 11 RBI. On the mound, he finished 1-1 in 16 appearances with a 2-to-1 strikeout to walk ratio (18-to-9) in 17.0 innings. For his career at the plate, Morales batted .260 with 24 doubles, 14 homeruns, 68 RBI, and five stolen bases. He also earned the Peter Peletta Award for loyal service to the Athletic Department.

oC Jon Norfolk - In his first year as a switch hitter, Norfolk established career highs in virtually every offensive category, including hits (51), runs (18), RBI (27) and extra base hits (12). He finished the season batting .323 with nine doubles, three homeruns and two stolen bases. For his career, Norfolk batted .323 with 17 doubles, a triple, four homeruns and 53 RBI.

oOF Jonnie Knoble - Knoble finished his finest season on the Hill Top in 2007, with career highs in batting average (.311), at bats (190), hits (59), and stolen bases (23). His 23 stolen bases were good enough for third in conference. For his career, Knoble is first all-time in stolen base percentage (.847), third in stolen bases (61), eighth in runs scored (131), ninth in at bats (625), and twelfth in hits (134). Knoble won the Sandee L. Hill Dedication award, which is given to the student-athlete who exemplifies both academic and athletic excellence.

-Two Dons named to ESPN Magazine/CoSIDA District VIII All Academic First Team. Junior SS Tavo Hall earned a 3.88 GPA in International Business and senior OF Jonnie Knoble finished with a 3.66 in biology.

-Junior SS Tavo Hall named 2007 Class Valedictorian. His academic honors include the Charles Harney award, presented to the student-athlete graduating with the highest GPA and the West Coast Conference Honor Roll ¡V Gold Honors. He was also a member of the USF National Advisory Board. As an athlete, Hall is a three-year starting short stop for the Dons, a three time Baseball team academic award winner, 2005 WCC honorable mention, WCC Player of the Week (3/15/05), and a member of the 2005 Johnny Quick Classic All-Tournament Team. For his career, Hall is batting .283 with 18 doubles, one home run, 48 RBI, 86 runs and 38 stolen bases.

-With the win over the Gaels on Friday, junior left-hander Aaron Poreda (7-6) joins Jerry Eisler (1962-64) in third place on the Dons all time wins chart with 17. The Moraga native threw 7.0 innings, only allowing one earned run off two hits and three walks, and recorded six strikeouts. For his career, Poreda owns a 2.61 ERA (fifth on all time Dons charts), 167 strikeouts (eighth), and sixty walks in 245 innings (eighth). He has thrown four complete games and saved one in the Green and Gold. Poreda has only given up 95 runs (71 earned) off of 233 hits.