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WCC Baseball Season Wrap up

July 27, 2010

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West Coast Conference sets new record with 31 selections in 2010 MLB Draft

Highlighted by seven selections in the first 10 rounds, the West Coast Conference had a record total of 31 student-athletes selected in the 2010 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. The WCC had 24 players taken in 2009, 21 in 2008 and a then-conference record of 27 in 2007.

The first five WCC players selected were pitchers, as Sammy Solis of San Diego went in the second round to the Washington Nationals, 2010 WCC Pitcher of the Year Kyle Blair was picked in the fourth round by the Cleveland Indians, Cole Cook of Pepperdine was selected in the fifth round by the Indians, Pepperdine's Matt Bywater was taken in the seventh round by the Minnesota Twins and San Diego's Zach Walters was picked up in the ninth round by the Arizona Diamondbacks. Gonzaga's Drew Heid was the first WCC position player taken when he was selected in the ninth round by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

In addition to Blair's selection, 2010 WCC Player of the Year James Meador of San Diego went to the Detroit Tigers in the 21st round and 2010 WCC Defensive Player of the Year Rocky Gale of Portland was chosen by the San Diego Padres in the 24th round.

The University of San Diego, which won the 2010 WCC title with a 19-2 conference record, had 10 of the 31 selections while Santa Clara and San Francisco were next with four apiece.


WCC TEAM NOTES
SCHOOL TEAM NOTES

Overall Record: 20-36
WCC Record: 8-13
  • The Zags dropped all three games in their final conference series against Portland, ending their season with an overall record of 20-36 and 8-13 in the West Coast Conference.

  • Gonzaga Head Coach Mark Machtolf has recorded all 200 wins with Gonzaga and currently sits third on the school's all-time wins list behind Steve Hertz (637) and Larry Koentopp (289).

  • Seniors Mark Castellitto and Drew Heid earned spots on the All-WCC team, while Clayton Eslick and Steven Halcomb were selected to the All-Freshmen team.

  • Heid was a unanimous All-WCC selection by all of the WCC coaches, earning his second career All-WCC honor after posting team highs in batting average (.390), hits (92), doubles (18), slugging (.602), on-base percentage (.467), and runs scored (54) He also set the Gonzaga record for hits in a single season with 92, passing Larry Patterson's 1977 mark of 91.

  • Overall Record: 23-33
    WCC Record: 5-16
  • Loyola Marymount ended its season with a 5-16 conference record and 23-33 overall.

  • Junior Jonathan Johnson hit nine triples on the season, tying him for second on the Lions' all-time single-season record books.

  • Freshman left-handed hitter Matt Lowenstein was named WCC Freshman of the Year, becoming the ninth Lion to be selected WCC Freshman of the Year, and the first since Angelo Songco earned the award in 2007. Lowenstein was given All-WCC honorable mention honors and a spot on the All-Freshman team, after hitting safely in each of the last 16 games of the year, batting .344 with 32 runs scored, 15 doubles, four triples, a homer, and 30 RBI in his inaugural season.

  • Sophomore Ryan Hawthorne All-WCC first team honors, while teammate Chris Eusebio took home honorable mention accolades.

  • Overall Record: 24-30
    WCC Record: 12-9
  • The Waves closed out the season with a three-game sweep of the Dons, giving them a final overall record of 24-30 and sole possession of third place in the WCC at 12-9, matching last season's mark.

  • Senior LHP Robert Dickmann delivered a 1-0 complete game shutout against San Francisco in his final collegiate start in the Waves' season finale, earning him Rawlings WCC Pitcher of the Week honors. The Waves took home six Rawlings WCC Pitcher of the Week awards in 2010.

  • Junior LHP Matt Bywater, redshirt sophomore RHP Cole Cook, sophomore OF Brian Humphries, and senior 3B Colin Rooney were tabbed to the 2010 All-WCC team, while honorable mention citations were given to senior LHP Robert Dickmann, junior OF/DH Floyd Given, sophomore C Nate Johnson, and freshmen INF Joe Sever and Zachary Vincej. Bywater and Cook were unanimous selections to the All-WCC First Team, while middle infielders Sever and Vincej were unanimous picks for the all-freshman team.
  • Overall Record: 34-18
    WCC Record: 14-7
  • The Pilots finished off a three-game sweep of Gonzaga to close out the season, earning its fourth WCC series sweep of the year and best ever showing in the WCC, finishing in second place with a 14-7 league mark. The Pilots end the regular season with the second most wins in program history at 34-18.

  • Senior catcher Rocky Gale highlighted Portland's all-conference team by being named the 2010 WCC Defender of the Year. Teammates Chris Dennis, Riley Henricks, and Kyle Kraus earned All-WCC first team honors, while Nick Armenta was selected to the All-Freshman Team and earned Honorable Mention honors with CJ Cullen.

  • Dennis, Portland's record-breaking closer, was one of five finalists for the sixth annual NCBWA Stopper of the Year Award. The junior right-hander registered 14 saves during his first season at UP, setting new career and single-season marks for the Pilots.
  • Overall Record: 19-32-1
    WCC Record: 8-13
  • Saint Mary's wrapped up the 2010 season with a 19-32-1 overall record and an 8-13 record in WCC play.

  • Sophomore 1B Troy Channing turned in another solid season and was selected to the All- WCC First Team for the second consecutive season. Junior OF Justin Fazio and sophomore RHP Kyle Barraclough were selected honorable mention, while Patrick Wisdom was named to the 10-man WCC All-Freshman Team. Channing finished the season with 15 home runs, bringing his career total to 35 and passing James Mouton (1988-91) for Saint Mary's career record for home runs.

  • The Gaels closed out the season with a three-game series at No. 15 San Diego, taking game two behind outstanding pitching efforts from Kyle Barraclough and Taylor Reid. Barraclough pitched five full innings, allowing one run on four hits with seven strikeouts, to get the win and improve to 6-6. Reid came in to throw the final four innings, holding the Toreros scoreless.
  • Overall Record: 37-22
    WCC Record: 19-2
  • San Diego captured its third WCC title in the last four years by posting a 19-2 record in conference play. The 19-2 mark, is the best overall record for any WCC team since the league switched from a two-division league to a one-division league back in 2006. The previous record was held by USD, when they went 18-3 in 2007.

  • The USD baseball team had a program-record 10 players selected in the Major League Baseball 2010 first-year player draft this past June. With the 10 players selected, USD was tied with Arizona State, Georgia Tech and Louisville for the second most players drafted in this years draft, while Auburn led the nation with 11 players selected.

  • Senior outfielder James Meador took home his second consecutive WCC Player of the Year honor, joining Santa Clara's Duane Larson (1970-71) as the only players in WCC history to earn multiple player of the year honors.
  • Overall Record: 28-28
    WCC Record: 10-11
  • San Francisco finished the 2010 season with a 28-28 overall record and finishes in fourth place in the conference standings after posting a 10-11 mark in league play.

  • Eight members of the USF Baseball team captured 2010 All-West Coast Conference honors. Sophomore infielder Nik Balog, junior outfielder Connor Bernatz and junior infielder Stephen Yarrow earned first team selections, while junior outfielder Pete Lavin, senior catcher Ryan Lipkin, senior righthander Doug Murray and senior shortstop Derek Poppert were honorable mention selections. Utility player Jason Mahood was named to the All-Freshman squad. Yarrow led the league with 16 home runs and ranks fourth on USF's all-time list with 31.

  • Lipkin was named as one of the 16 semifinalists for the 2010 Coleman Company - Johnny Bench Award. Lipkin is the first Don to be named a semifinalist for the award since Steve Booth made the list in 2002.
  • Overall Record: 23-31
    WCC Record: 8-13
  • Santa Clara closed out the 2010 season on a high note by taking 2-of-3 from Loyola Marymount.

  • Seniors Tommy Medica and Geoff Klein were selected to the All-WCC First Team. It was the third time Medica has been picked as an All-WCC First Team player and the second time and second straight year for Klein. Both have won WCC batting titles, Medica as a freshman in 2007 and Klein as a junior in 2009.

  • Bronco newcomers, junior transfer Evan Peters and freshmen Matt Ozanne and Ryan Rieger were named as honorable mentions. Ozanne and Rieger drew additional praise, recognized on the league's 2010 WCC All-Freshman Team.

  • Junior first baseman Curtis Wagner was named to the 2010 ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America Baseball Second Team, as selected by the CoSIDA.
  • AROUND THE WCC

    2010 Baseball All-Conference Team
    With a 19-2 WCC record, the University of San Diego posted the best conference mark since the WCC went to a single division 21-game format. On Thursday, the Toreros were rewarded for their dominant play, landing eight players on the WCC's 25-man all-conference team, including the Player of the Year in senior outfielder James Meador and the Pitcher of the Year in junior RHP Kyle Blair. San Diego Head Coach Rich Hill was named the WCC Coach of the Year after guiding the Toreros to their third WCC title in the last four seasons. Rounding out this year's individual honors is Portland senior catcher Rocky Gale taking home the league's Defensive Player of the Year award and LMU's Matt Lowenstein earning Freshman of the Year honors.

    Meador, who took home the WCC Player of the Year honor last season, becomes just the second player in conference history to earn the Player of the Year honor multiple times and the first since Santa Clara's Duane Larson also earned back-to-back awards in 1970-71. Meador paced the Toreros' high-powered offense, batting a league-best .488 during conference play, while ranking second in WCC games in hits (40) and RBI (25). The Ramona, CA native enters the NCAA Tournament ranked fifth on USD's all-time doubles list with 56, while his 62 RBI on the season rank him third on the Toreros' single-season RBI chart.

    Blair has been magnificent on the mound for the Toreros, posting a league-best 6-1 record in conference play with an impressive 1.98 ERA, which was also tops in the WCC. Blair struck out a conference-best 71 batters in just 54.2 innings, while his strikeout-to-walk ratio (71-11) was also the best in the league. The Monte Sereno, CA native is just the third USD player in conference history to earn the league's top pitching honor, following Brian Matusz, who took home the award in 2008, and Ricky Barrett, who earned the honor in 2002.

    Lowenstein becomes the ninth LMU player to be selected WCC Freshman of the Year and the first since Angelo Songco earned the award in 2007. Lowenstein turned in a fantastic first season for the Lions, batting .325 during league play. In conference play, his 13 RBI tied him for third most among freshmen, while he lead all WCC rookies in total bases (39), while tying for second in hits (26) and runs (15).

    Gale becomes the first catcher to win the WCC's Defensive Player of the Year honor in the awards three-year existence. The previous two awards went to middle infielders. Gale was absolutely lethal throwing out would-be base stealers, tossing out 19-of-26 (.730) attempted base stealers.

    Hill won his fourth WCC Coach of the Year honor and his third in the last four years. Hill, in his 12th season at USD, has led the Toreros to their fourth trip to the NCAA Regionals in the last five seasons.

    For the complete 2010 Baseball All-Conference list, click here .

    WCC No. 5 In Strength of Schedule
    West Coast Conference teams played some of the toughest schedules in the nation. The WCC as a league ranked No. 5 in the nation in strength of schedule, trailing only the Pac-10, the SEC, the Big West and the Big 12, according to the final Boydsworld.com rankings.

    CONFERENCE STRENGTH OF SCHEDULE RANKINGS
    1. Pac-10
    2. Big West
    3. SEC
    4. Big 12
    4. WEST COAST

    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)