April 22, 2006
LOS ANGELES, Calif. - The big bats re-emerged for the Santa Clara University baseball team as an 11-run, 16-hit attack carried the Broncos to an 11-8 victory Saturday afternoon over the Loyola Marymount Lions. The win evens series and sets up the rubber game between the teams tomorrow afternoon at 1 p.m. at George Page Stadium.
Freshman sensation Matt Long went 4-for-6 for Santa Clara, including a clutch game-tying, two-RBI triple in the eighth inning. Kris Watts hit his seventh home run of the season, a three-run job, while Dustin Realini also had a pair of hits and drove in a couple of runs.
Leading 2-1 in the top of the fifth, the Broncos returned to the Lions the favor of a big two-out rally which they had been dealt the night before. With runners on second and third and two away, Watts got out in front of one and drove it over the right-field fence to give SCU a 5-1 lead. Jason Matteucci extended the lead by a run two batters later with his second triple of the year, plating Eric Newton.
But LMU answered immediately, chasing Bronco starter Sean O'Neill and taking advantage of four walks and three singles to post a seven-run frame to pull ahead by an 8-6 margin. Two of those runs were forced in on walks while Brian Wilson drove in another pair with a single.
Things stayed that way until the SCU half of the eighth, as Brady Fuerst and Kevin Drever led off with a double and single, respectively, setting the table for Long's two-run triple which knotted things at 8-apiece. Realini came up next and drove Long in with a single to left to put the Broncos ahead for good. SCU tacked an insurance run on in the ninth as well.
Reliever Chris Stansbury, meanwhile, shut down the Lion offense in an inning and two-thirds of work to earn his first win of the season. Mark Willinsky earned his seventh save of the season by working the final inning and a third, ending things by getting out of a two-on, one-out jam by inducing a fly out and a pop out.