March 24, 2005
SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. - The Santa Clara baseball team dropped a close 1-0 West Coast Conference contest at San Francisco on Thursday afternoon in front of 447 fans at Benedetti Diamond. The loss moves the Broncos' record to 13-11 overall and 0-3 in WCC action. The Dons improve to 17-7, 4-0 in conference play.
The Broncos threatened to score in the top half of the first as they loaded the bases with two-outs. Robert Perry was issued a walk to continue the inning for the Broncos. Michael Thompson should have been the final out of the inning, but Don catcher Daniel Morales dropped a third strike and made an errand throw to first base to put runners at second and third for SCU. Kris Watts was issued the second walk of the inning to load the bases, but a Bronco strikeout would end the rally.
The Dons would score the only run of the contest as in the bottom of the third inning. Andrew Smith was hit by a pitch to lead off the frame before a sacrifice hit moved him to second. Three consecutive hits would follow as a single by Stefan Gartrell brought Smith across the plate. However, Bronco starter Anthony Rea would record his fourth strikeout of the contest to strand Dons at second and third base to end the Dons rally.
In the bottom of the sixth, USF threatened to add another run to its total with a runner at second base with two outs. Royce Fukuroku hit a single to left field with Scott Cousins on second. Cousins would attempt to score on the single, but Ryan Chiarelli's throw from the outfield was on target and caught Cousins at home plate.
A two-out double from Perry would give Santa Clara a runner in scoring position in the top of the eighth inning. However, USF reliever Patrick McGuigan would enter the game and retire the next batter to get out of the jam.
Rea was solid in only his second start of the season. The right-hander threw all eight innings for SCU, allowing only one run and recording nine strikeouts.
Santa Clara posted only three hits as a team with two coming off the bat of Perry. Dustin Realini recorded the other SCU hit.
USF starter Nick Pereira improved to 6-1 on the day as he posted a new career-high with 13 strikeouts.
The three-game series will continue on Friday with a 2 p.m. game in San Francisco. Right-hander Mike Stutes will get the start on the mound for SCU.