Broncos Win Slugfest Over Portland
April 3, 2004
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Shortstop Eric Newton knocked-in three runs and outfielder Ryan Chiarelli went 4-for-5 from the plate to lead the Santa Clara University baseball team to a 13-11 victory in a high-scoring West Coast Conference contest Saturday at Buck Shaw Stadium.
The Broncos improved to 16-15 on the season and 5-3 in the WCC, while Portland fell to 3-24 overall and remained winless at 0-8 in league play. The two teams meet in the three-game series finale Sunday at 1 p.m.
Chiarelli led five Bronco batters that registered multi-hit games with his four-hit, two-RBI effort. Centerfielder Robert Perry went 3-for-6 with an RBI and SCU's Nic Crosta, Newton and Will Thompson recorded two hits apiece.
Bronco reliever Thomas Van Buskirk improved his record to 3-1 on the season after pitching a career-high 3.1 innings and allowing just two hits and one run while striking out four Pilot batters. Junior closer Anthony Rea earned his ninth save of the season, which ties for second on the Broncos list for the most in a single-season (10).
Sean Sargent earned the loss for Portland after getting shelled for 10 runs in the first two innings of the game. His record fell to 1-4 on the season. Stephen Ball came on in relief with two outs in the bottom of the second inning and recorded a solid outing, pitching 6.1 innings and allowing just five hits and three runs.
Santa Clara exploded offensively to open the game with a seven-run first inning. Leadoff hitter Perry opened the Broncos half of the inning wth a singled, which was followed by a single by Chiarelli and an RBI double down the rightfield line by Michael Thompson. Then, Will Thompson singled to centerfield and advanced to second on a fielding error, while two Broncos crossed the plate for a 3-0 lead.
Nic Crosta singled to centerfield, scoring Will Thompson, then stole second and third bases to put himself in scoring position. Two batters later, David Hoffmire's attempted sacrifice bunt was fielded cleanly by Sargent and Crosta was thrown out at home plate. Newton then doubled down the leftfield line scoring both Hoffmire and catcher Matt McColgan. He then scored after Perry and Chiarelli recorded their second singles of the inning.
Portland answered with a four-run second then the Broncos scored three more runs in the bottom half of the inning, giving Santa Clara a 10-4 lead after two innings.
With the Broncos owning a 12-5 lead in the top half of the fifth, Portland's bats came alive when Santa Clara pulled starter Kellen McConnell for freshman Bryan Fleming. The Pilots opened with three-straight singles then Rhett Parker walked to score the first of five Portland runs in the inning.
Senior righthander Patrick McBride came into the game and was touched for a two-RBI single by Colton Homme. He then forced Billy Krause to fly out to right field then struck out shortstop Jesse Rogers. After Homme stole second, Gustaf Little singled to right centerfield and drove in two more runs to bring the Pilots to within 12-10. Van Buskirk came into the game two batters later and forced Travis Vetters to gound out to Newton.
Both teams added just one run in the sixth then were unable to score the rest of the way to end the game with the Broncos taking a two-run victory.