SAN DIEGO — San Diego got a big West Coast Conference series win, taking the rubber match 5-3 over Gonzaga Saturday afternoon at Cunningham Stadium.
The Toreros (25-8, 7-2) got an outstanding performance from sophomore starting pitcher Dylan Covey. He allowed a pair of runs in the first inning and a second-inning leadoff single before putting the early jitters to bed and tossing an absolute gem.
Covey did not give up another hit as he retired 21 of the last 23 batters he faced before handing the ball over to the nation’s saves leader Michael Wagner in the ninth inning. Wagner allowed a run, but nailed down his 14th save of the season.
A controversial “no-catch” call in the second inning helped the Toreros tie the game. It wasn’t until the eighth inning that eiher team would score again. San Diego finally got to Gonzaga (20-9, 3-3) starter Billy Moon in the eighth with the assistance of a leadoff error. Dillon Haupt singled and then Kris Bryant drove home both runners with a triple into the right-centerfield gap to put San Diego up 4-2.
After the game, we chatted with both head coaches and San Diego starter Dylan Covey.
Gonzaga head coach Mark Machtolf discussed the decision to leave in Moon to face Bryant as well as the momentum-shifting call by the umpires in the second inning:
San Diego head coach Rich Hill was understandably much more upbeat, but praised the efforts of Gonzaga. Hill talked about Covey’s performance and the recent success of Haupt both at the plate and behind the dish:
Covey talked about how he was able to shake off the early-inning hits and settle in for eight innings. The sophomore also discussed how comforting it is to have such a strong offense backing him up and how close he feels to being back to where he was prior to his health issues during his senior year of high school: