March 19, 2005

Baseball Drops a Pair of 10-3 Contests to Pepperdine

March 19, 2005

SANTA CLARA, Calif. - After wet field conditions delayed the start of the West Coast Conference opening doubleheader for an hour and a half, the Santa Clara baseball team dropped a pair of 10-3 contests to Pepperdine on Saturday. With the losses, SCU falls to 13-10 overall and 0-2 in conference action. The Waves are now 14-8 and 2-0 in the WCC.

In the opener, Waves starter Kea Kometani held the Broncos to only three hits in the first eight innings of action as he improved to 4-2 on the season.

Pepperdine posted runs in the first, fourth and fifth innings to build a 4-0 lead heading into the seventh frame. Three more Waves runs scored in the top half of the inning before the Broncos broke onto the scoreboard in the bottom half.

With two outs, Jason Matteucci reached base on an error and Shawn Epidendio was hit by a pitch to keep the inning alive. Shortstop Michael Lange drove Matteucci in with a single to right field. After a walk to Ryan Chiarelli, the bases were loaded for Santa Clara. However, a Bronco strikeout would end the scoring threat and the inning.

Pepperdine added three more runs in the top of the eighth before SCU scored two runs in the bottom of the ninth. With the bases loaded once again and only one out, a sacrifice fly by Robert Perry scored the first Bronco run of the inning. The second SCU score came off an RBI-single by Ryan Conan, which brought pinch runner Eric Newton across home plate. Another SCU strikeout ended the game as the Broncos suffered the loss.

Starter Kellan McConnell recorded eight strikeouts in 6.1 innings, but allowed six runs as he fell to 2-3 on the season.

Lange was led the Bronco offense as he went 2-for-4 at the plate with an RBI. Perry and Conan drove in the remaining SCU runs.

In the nightcap, strong Pepperdine pitching once again kept SCU off the scoreboard and led the Waves to another 10-3 victory. Starter Paul Coleman improved to 4-0 after allowing only five hits and striking out 11 batters in 6.2 innings of action.

After Pepperdine scored three runs in the top of the first, the Broncos answered with a run in the bottom of the frame. Back-to-back walks started the inning for SCU. After two fly outs, Kris Watts hit a single through the right side of the infield to drive in a run. At the end of one inning, Santa Clara trailed 3-1.

The Waves added two in the top of the second inning and one in the fourth before SCU added one in the bottom of the fourth. A lead-off double from Watts started the rally for the Broncos. He moved to third base on a throw into the infield after a fly out and scored on a throwing error by the Waves' right fielder.

The final Bronco run scored in the bottom of the seventh inning as SCU trailed 10-2. A two-out rally began with a walk to Chiarelli who moved to third on a single from Epidendio a batter later. He came around to score on another single, this time from Dustin Realini.

Bronco starter Patrick Overholt suffered his third loss of the year as he fell to 0-3 in 2005.

Offensively, Watts led the charge with a 3-for-4 performance. He scored a run and drove one in. Epidendio was 2-for-4, while Realini drove another SCU run.

The series will conclude on Sunday with a 1 p.m. meeting at Buck Shaw Stadium. A pair of freshmen will take the mound as Santa Clara's Mike Stutes and Pepperdine's Barry Enright square off in the series finale.