March 23, 2005

Baseball Begins Seven-Game Road Swing at San Francisco

March 23, 2005

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -

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Santa Clara (13-10, 0-2) vs. San Francisco (16-7, 3-0)

Game #25 • Thurs., March 24 • Benedetti Diamond - San Francisco, Calif. • 2 p.m.
Game #26 • Fri., March 25 • Benedetti Diamond - San Francisco, Calif. • 2 p.m.
Game #27 • Sat., March 26 • Benedetti Diamond - San Francisco, Calif. • 1 p.m.

Probable Pitching Matchups
3/24 - Santa Clara - RHP Anthony Rea - Sr. (2-1, 3.57 ERA)
San Francisco - RHP Nick Pereira - Sr. (5-1, 1.05 ERA)
3/25 - Santa Clara - RHP Mike Stutes - Fr. (4-2, 3.99 ERA)
San Francisco - RHP Tony Biale - Jr. (2-1, 1.72 ERA)
3/26 - Santa Clara - RHP Kellan McConnell - Sr. (2-2, 5.35 ERA)
San Francisco - LHP Scott Cousins - So. (5-1, 2.35 ERA)

The Coaches
Santa Clara - Mark O'Brien (4th Year) - 96-95
San Francisco - Nino Giarratano (7th Year) - 161-201

This Weekend
The Santa Clara baseball team will begin a seven-game road swing this week when it travels to San Francisco for a three-game West Coast Conference series at Benedetti Diamond. Due to the Easter holiday, the series will begin on Thursday and conclude on Saturday.

The Dons have won their last seven games, including a three-game sweep over Portland to open up WCC play last weekend. Over the span of those seven games, USF has outscored its opponents, 63-12. Last week, sophomore OF/LHP Scott Cousins was named the conference player of the week after leading USF to a 5-0 record by posting a 2-0 record on the mound and hitting .429 over the week.

Broncos Drop Doubleheader Games in Rain Soaked Weekend
Santa Clara fell to Pepperdine in its West Coast Conference opening doubleheader. Rain and wet field conditions pushed back the start of Saturday's scheduled doubleheader by an hour and a half. When the teams got on the field, solid pitching from the Waves starting pitchers led Pepperdine to a pair of 10-3 victories at Buck Shaw Stadium.

Rain once again played a factor on Sunday as the scheduled 1 p.m. game got underway at 2:35 p.m. However, travel accommodations forced the game to be suspended heading into the top of the seventh inning with Pepperdine ahead by a 5-2 margin. The contest will be resumed where it was stopped at a later date in the season.

Rea Edges Towards Career Saves Record
After posting a Santa Clara single-season record with 13 saves in 2004, senior right-hander Anthony Rea moved a large step closer to holding the Bronco career save record. Entering the 2005 campaign, Rea had 20 career saves. With five this season, he is currently tied atop the Bronco record books with Mike McDonald. One more save, which would be the 26th of his career, would make Rea all-time career saves leader in Santa Clara baseball history.

O'Brien Closing in on 100 Wins
Bronco skipper Mark O'Brien is nearing a milestone 100th win as his current record stands at 96-93. In only his fourth year at the helm, he has posted an impressive 52-37 mark in West Coast Conference play. When O'Brien does reach his 100th win, he will become only the fifth coach in Santa Clara baseball history to reach the milestone. He will join former Bronco coaches John Oldham, Jerry McClain, Sal Taormina and John Cotrell in the esteemed group.

The Real-ini Deal
Second baseman Dustin Realini has proven to be one of the Bronco's biggest offensive weapons in the early part of the 2005 season. With 21 starts at second base, Realini ranks second on the team with a .325 batting average. Batting either third or fourth in the lineup, Realini has become the Bronco's best run producer, driving in a team-high 19 runs. His four home runs are tied for the team lead, while his .554 slugging percentage is one of the Bronco's best marks.

Adding Watts-age
Junior catcher Kris Watts has become a valuable part of the Santa Clara lineup after transferring from Ohlone College prior to the 2005 season. Currently leading the team with a .329 batting average, Watts has played in all 23 of the Bronco's contests this season, making 20 starts. The Fremont, Calif. native ranks second on the team with 24 hits and third with 13 RBI. He is equally as impressive on the defensive side with only one error, a catcher's interference call, in 178 chances.

Lange Returns to the Lineup
Sophomore shortstop Michael Lange had a rocky start to his 2005 season, but is back in the Bronco lineup in a big way. After going hitless in the first SCU series of the season, Lange was hampered with an injury which kept him off the field for the next 16 games. In the series finale against Brown, the West Covina native made his fourth start of the year at shortstop and made his presence known right off the bat. He was 2-for-2 in the game with a walk and a run scored. He started each game of the Pepperdine series at shortstop and posted another multiple-hit game in the opener.

Bronco Rotation Notes
Anthony Rea - Senior Right-handed Pitcher (Palo Alto, Calif. - Gunn HS)
Will be making his second start of the season against San Francisco... strong in first start of the season, pitching 7.2 innings against Washington... allowed only five hits and struck out six Huskies... tied for the team-lead in apperances with 12... 3.57 ERA ranks second among Bronco hurlers with more than 20 innings of work... allowed only nine runs in 22.2 innings... allowed only one extra-base hit in 2005... tied for SCU career saves record with 25... set a single-season record a year ago with 13... currently has five saves on the season.

Mike Stutes - Freshman Right-handed Pitcher (Lake Oswego, Ore. - Lake Oswego HS)
Has made five starts in 2005... tops among the weekend starters with a 3.99 ERA... leads the pitching staff with 40 strikeouts in 38.1 innings of action... also leads the Broncos with four wins... after earning wins over Utah and San Diego State, posted third win of the season with 8.1 inning performance against Cal Poly... did not allow a run in a season-long outing... posted a team season-high 11 strikeouts in fourth win of the season against Brown on March 13.

Kellan McConnell - Senior Right-handed Pitcher (San Juan Capistrano, Calif. - Capistrano Valley HS)
Has made eight starts in 2005, which is tied for tops on the team... leads the team with 41 strikeouts in a team-high 45 innings of work... recorded a season-high 10 strikeouts in 7.2 innings of work against Washington on February 20 to earn his first win of the season... second win came against San Jose State after allowing only one run in seven innings of action... named WCC Pitcher of the Week after Washington series.