April 1, 2009
STANFORD, Calif. - In a close and intense Battle of the Bay, the Santa Clara baseball team was edged 6-5 in the series opener against Stanford. The Broncos and Cardinal were tied 5-5 until the home half of the eighth inning when Stanford scored the game-winning run.
The two teams will play three more single games throughout the remainder of the season and will conclude the series on Wednesday, May 6 at 6 p.m. at AT&T Park in San Francisco.
The win went to sophomore Drew Soren (1-0). He struck out five Broncos in two innings of work. The loss went to J.R. Graham (0-1). The freshman righty tossed three innings in relief, giving up one run and striking out three.
Matt Long led the Broncos with two runs, while Geoff Klein added two more RBIs to his team-leading tally. Brady Fuerst hit double No. 15 of the season, while Long and Jon Karcich also had doubles in the game.
Santa Clara started off strong in the first inning. The Broncos took a 2-0 lead as Long scored on an error by Cardinal catcher Zach Jones. Karcich then scored on a wild pitch from Brandt Walker. Long reached on a hit-by-pitch, while Karcich got on with a fielder's choice.
Stanford then knotted the game in the bottom of the second inning. Jones tripled to left field to open the half and then scored on an Adam Gaylord base-hit. The bases then loaded as Gaylord and Brent Milleville advanced on a groundout and Colin Walsh walked. The second run was plated as Kellen Kiilsgaard reached on an error by Bronco shortstop Karcich. With two outs already on the board, SCU quickly got out of the inning as Joey August grounded out to second baseman David Abraham.
After a scoreless third inning, Abraham drove in Chris Morton in the fourth inning to give the Broncos a one-run lead, 3-2. Morton got on base with a single to right field.
However, the Cardinal tied the score once again and took a two-run lead in the bottom of the fifth. Stanford home runs from August and a two-run shot from Milleville did the trick.
Yet, Santa Clara was not about to back down and tallied two runs in the seventh inning to tie the game up for the final time, 5-5. Long doubled to left field and then advanced to third on a wild pitch to get the Broncos on base. Reliever Michael Marshall then walked back-to-back Broncos to load the bases. Long and Lucas Herbst scored with a single from Klein. The junior catcher now has 30 RBIs and is one shy of matching his sophomore year total.
In the eighth inning, Stanford had runners on first and third with two outs on the board. The Cardinal regained the advantage and Kiilsgaard drove home Jake Schlander for a 6-5 lead.
The Broncos were focused to get on top in the ninth inning but Soren struck out two and Herbst flied out to left field to bring the game to a close.
Santa Clara returns to West Coast Conference action this weekend against No. 23 San Diego. The Broncos and Toreros open the three-game series on Friday, Apr. 3 at 7 p.m. and continue action on Saturday, Apr. 4 at 6 p.m. The series finale is scheduled for Sunday, Apr. 5 at 3:30 p.m. and will be televised nationally on ESPNU.