Cal State Fullerton and USC both ended lengthy conference series droughts. But only one team did it in a positive fashion. Fittingly, UC Santa Barbara/Long Beach State and San Diego State/UC Irvine concluded their series with yet another tight game in each series finale.
Check out that plus much more in Saturday’s Southern California college baseball roundup that features photo galleries from Pepperdine, Irvine and Northridge:
#3 Cal Poly 3, #19 Cal State Fullerton 0
Could it get any worse for the Titans right now? Their head coach is on paid administrative leave, but he can’t be blamed for the porous offensive effort this weekend.
Cal State Fullerton (18-16, 3-6) was swept in conference for the first time since 2007 (UC Riverside), falling 3-0 Saturday at Cal Poly (34-5, 11-1). Mustangs’ starter Casey Bloomquist succinctly shutdown the Titans’ offense. He allowed only three hits and three walks, pitching his first career complete game.
Grahamm Wiest pitched well for Fullerton, striking out nine and allowing two earned runs in an eight-inning complete game effort, but the offense gave him zero support. Cal Poly’s Mark Mathias hit a leadoff homer in the first inning and the Mustangs added two runs in the fifth when Peter Van Gansen knocked an RBI triple and scored on an error.
Fullerton has now lost five games in a row.
USC 2, Arizona 0
For the first time since 2009, USC (20-17, 9-9) recorded a conference series sweep, taking down Arizona (17-23, 6-12) behind a near immaculate outing by Bob Wheatley. The senior southpaw, who had an 0-3 record and a 12.21 ERA in five conference starts entering the game, allowed only two hits and one walk in seven innings. He got great defense behind him, including this ricocheted catch by catcher Garrett Stubbs:
Wheatley said after the game that he and head coach Dan Hubbs saw some small mechanical flaws on tape and the adjustments made proved to be the difference. Wheatley was able to get more deception, command all his pitches and had a really good dip in his changeup.
Here is the lefty talking about bouncing back from the rough stretch to start conference:
Arizona starter Tyger Talley matched zeroes with Wheatley until the seventh inning when an Omar Cotto RBI groundout got the Trojans on the board after back-to-back singles. Vahn Bozoian followed with a smash to left field for an RBI double that was more than enough run support for Wheatley and closer Kyle Davis, who struck out three in two clean innings to earn his fourth save.
After the game, Hubbs talked about the team’s big conference sweep and the potential of the Trojans making a run toward the postseason.
Also, check out the top shots from the game from CBD photographer Shotgun Spratling:
UC Riverside 4, UC Davis 2
Alex Rubanowitz came off the bench and delivered a two-run, pinch-hit single in the sixth inning that put UC Riverside (17-18, 5-4) ahead for good. Cody Hough reached three times.
#23 UC Santa Barbara 2, Long Beach State 1
In a low-scoring series, No. 23 UC Santa Barbara (24-10, 5-7) salvaged a win on Saturday, taking a 2-1 victory over Long Beach State (18-19, 5-4). The Gauchos got a pair of runs against Nick Sabo early and Shane Bieber made it stand with eight strong innings. Bieber scattered eight hits, allowing one run while striking out eight.
San Diego State 4, UC Irvine 3
A pair of runs in the seventh inning and another pair an inning later proved to be enough for San Diego State (28-12). Mark Seyler allowed two runs in seven innings before turning the ball over to Michael Cederoth, who recorded his 15th save of the season — one behind Irvine’s Sam Moore, who collected No. 16 yesterday.
Brad Haynal was 2-for-3 with a run and an RBI while Ty France reached three times for SDSU. The Anteaters (25-14) were led by Taylor Sparks’ three hits and Jerry McClanahan’s three RBI.
Hawai’i 9, Cal State Northridge 1
Cal State Northridge (15-24, 4-8) could not complete the sweep of Hawai’i (15-21, 3-9). The Matadors managed just one run in seven innings against Scott Squier and were shut down by Juliene Jones for two innings.
Marc Flores drove in three runs for Hawai’i and Stephen Ventimilia scored three runs.
Check out CBD photographer David Cohen’s top photos from the game :
#28 Pepperdine 4, San Francisco 3
Potential top 10 MLB Draft pick, Bradley Zimmer was moved from the leadoff spot to the No. 3 place in the San Francisco lineup, but the move didn’t jumpstart Zimmer or the Dons (18-20, 7-11). Zimmer went 0-for-5 to finish the series 0-for-12 against Pepperdine (30-9, 14-4). Even more disheartening for San Francisco was that Zimmer came to bat with runners on base (seven in total) in every at bat on Saturday, but couldn’t come through with a hit even with the tying run on second base in the ninth inning.
Pepperdine star Aaron Brown didn’t have the same troubles. He was 2-for-4 with a double and a run to go along with striking out 10 in six innings pitched. Brown moved to 8-1 on the season after Chandler Blanchard and Eric Karch allowed only one base runner in the final three innings. Karch collected his 11th save this season.
BYU 4, Loyola Marymount 2
Whatever postseason at-large bid hopes Loyola Marymount (24-15, 12-5) had took a major hit when BYU (16-25, 7-11) took a 4-2 win to swipe the series from the Lions. J.D. Busfield pitched five innings, allowing five hits and an earned run, but the offense mustered only four hits on the day.
Santa Clara 2, San Diego 1
Santa Clara (18-22, 8-7) went on the road and swept San Diego (25-14, 11-7) taking the third game on Saturday in extra innings. The Toreros must regroup and find some consistency at the plate.
#27 UCLA 7, Utah 3
The Bruins (20-16, 8-6) took the series finale with Utah (12-23, 3-5) to earn the series victory. Cody Poteet allowed two earned in six innings to pick up the win. Shane Zeile went 3-for-5, R, 2 RBI while Justin Hazard had two doubles and drove in two runs.