The Hawai’i Rainbow Warriors snapped the four-year string of dominance by the Fresno State Bulldogs in the WAC Tournament to earn a spot in the 2010 NCAA Tournament. The Warriors held off a late charge by Fresno State to earn the 9-6 victory in Mesa, Ariz. on Sunday afternoon.
Kolten Wong was named the WAC Tournament MVP as he had an outstanding week finishing the tournament 10-for-18 (.555) with seven RBIs, 10 runs scored and six walks and did not strike out in the tournament. He hit three home runs in the tournament including a pair of critical home runs in the Warriors’ first game against Louisiana Tech, a two-run shot in the bottom of the eighth with his team trailing 6-4 and then a two-run shot in his next at bat in the bottom of the tenth with his team trailing 7-6.
Day four at the 2010 WAC Tournament saw Fresno State stave off elimination twice as they continue the quest to maintain domination of the conference tournament. The Bulldogs eliminated sixth-seeded San Jose State 13-1 in a run-rule seven inning game and then followed up with a 14-5 dismantling of fourth-seeded Hawai’i in the championship game to force the “if-necessary” game and set up a winner take all Sunday finish.
Day three of the 2010 WAC Tournament saw two more teams eliminated, both in walk-off fashion, and saw the league’s bully take a shot to the mouth. Third-seeded Nevada knocked of second-seeded New Mexico State with a walk-off two-run home run in the day’s first elimination game but then found a similar fate to the Aggies in the second elimination game of the day as the Wolf Pack were bested by sixth-seeded San Jose State in 10 innings on a walk-off two RBI single.
Day two of the 2010 WAC Tournament saw the first elimination as 3-seed Nevada ousted 5-seed Louisiana Tech 3-1. The 2-seed New Mexico State fell 13-7 to 4-seed Hawai’i and 1-seed Fresno State held on to defeat 6-seed San Jose State. There will be two elimination games played on Friday as the field will be whittled down to three by the end of the day.
The 2010 WAC Baseball Tournament got underway on Wednesday afternoon and fans were treated to an extra-inning game and an upset on day one as 4-seed Hawai’i came from behind twice to defeat 5-seed Louisiana Tech 8-7 and 6-seed San Jose State shut out 3-seed Nevada 6-0.
The 2010 WAC Tournament is being held in Mesa, Ariz. at Hohokam Field, better known as the spring training facility of the Chicago Cubs. This marks the first season since the tournament was reinstated in 2006 that it is being held at a neutral site. After another competitive conference season, Fresno State emerged as the regular season champion. It’s their fourth regular season title in five years with a conference record of 16-8. New Mexico State finished in a tie for second place with Nevada at 14-9-1 but earned the 2-seed in the tournament by virtue of the Aggies’ head-to-head record of 2-1-1 against the Wolf Pack. Hawai’i earned the 4-seed with a strong finish as they won six of their final eight conference games to finish 12-12 in league play. Louisiana Tech is the 5-seed having lost three of their final four conference games to finish 11-13 and San Jose State is the 6-seed having lost three of their final four conference games to finish 9-15 after winning the regular season last year with a 15-7 record. Sacramento State finished in seventh place and ends their conference season with a record of 7-17 in league play and 18-35-1 overall.
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Fresno State’s Jordan Ribera hit a two-run homer in the first game of the day and followed it up with another in the championship as Fresno State defeated New Mexico State 9-7 in game one and 5-3 in the final to claim its fourth-straight WAC Tournament baseball title. Ribera went 2-for-3 in the championship game with two RBI, a home run and two runs scored. Matt Morse picked up the win in the championship after going 2.2 innings without giving up a run. Fresno State receives the WAC’s automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament. Pairings for the tournament will be announced Monday at 12:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.
Day one of the WAC tournament saw some exciting baseball be played and as was the case all season long the games’ final scores were indicative of how closely bunched the league has been this season. The top two seeds in the tournament, San Jose State (over Nevada) and Louisiana Tech (over Hawai’i) won their opening day games while 4-seed New Mexico State handed 3-seed Fresno State their first loss in tournament play in the past three season (the Bulldogs had previously been 12-0).
The WAC tournament begins today and the six teams that are participating are the six teams that were picked in the preseason to be in Honolulu at the end of the season. However, that’s where the good prognostication ends.
Fresno State, the three time defending regular season, conference tournament and defending national champion was once again picked to win the league but they faltered in the early part of the conference season and nearly missed the conference tournament but used a four game sweep on the final weekend of play to go from 7th place to a tie for third place. Nevada, the team picked to finish third in the league was swept in the final two weekends of play to finish sixth. At one point the Wolf Pack were in first place in the league. Continue reading
FROM CBB NEWS SOURCES
DENVER, CO – The Western Athletic Conference has awarded the City of Mesa the WAC Baseball Tournament for 2010, 2011 and 2012, WAC Commissioner Karl Benson announced on Thursday. The event, which is subject to the WAC Board of Directors approval, will be played at Mesa’s Hohokam Stadium, the Chicago Cubs Spring Training home. The City of Mesa, Mesa Convention & Visitors Bureau and Phoenix Regional Sports Commission worked in tandem to secure the event which features Hawai‘i, Fresno State, Louisiana Tech, Sacramento State, Nevada, New Mexico State and San Jose State. Continue reading