STOCKTON, Calif. - Junior right-hander Trevor Megill tossed seven strong innings to guide LMU (33-20-1) to a 4-2 victory over Pepperdine (28-27) on Friday afternoon at the 2015 WCC Championship Tournament being played at Banner Island Ballpark in Stockton, Calif.
Megill allowed just two runs on three hits and two walks while striking out six to earn the victory and move to 5-4 on the year. It was his fourth straight quality start, and he now owns a 3-1 record with a 0.93 ERA over that span.
Just as it did in Thursday's lopsided 21-3 victory over USD, LMU got off to a hot start on Friday against the Waves, scoring three times in the second to take an early 3-0 lead. Sean Watkins led off the inning with a double before Jamey Smart reached on a single that left fielder Josh Davis lost in the sun. A sacrifice bunt moved the runners to second and third before Billy Wilson plated both runs with a two-RBI double down the right field line. Wilson proceeded to steal third base before eventually coming in to score on a single from Cassidy Brown.
Pepperdine starter A.J. Puckett got the first two he faced in the third inning without incident, but Watkins took advantage of a mistake in the next at bat, crushing his sixth homer of the year over the wall in left field to make it 4-0 Lions after three frames.
Puckett went the distance for the Waves, allowing four runs on nine hits over 8.0 innings with a career-high tying 10 strikeouts. Despite pitching well, the right-hander fell to 7-5 with the loss.
Watkins finished the game 3-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI, coming within a triple of the cycle. Joining Wilson and Watkins with doubles was Tanner Donnels, collecting his 20th of the year in his first at bat as part of a 2-for-4 day.
Megill cruised through the first seven innings, but a walk, a single and a hit-by-pitch loaded the bases with nobody out and chased the right-hander from the game and brought Cory Abbott to the mound in relief. Abbott got the first two without allowing a run to score, but after falling behind 1-0 in the count, he surrendered a two-out two-RBI single from Brad Anderson that cut the Lion lead in half at 4-2.
Abbott stayed in the game in the top of the ninth, retiring the side in order, including striking out Manny Jefferson for the final out, to seal the victory and earn his first career save.
LMU will advance to play the winner of a game between San Diego and Pepperdine tonight. The Championship Game will be contested at 7 p.m. on Saturday night.