Posted: Mar 21, 2018
SANTA CLARA, Calif. – Santa Clara baseball welcomes Bay Area rival Saint Mary's this weekend for the Dick's Sporting Goods conference home opener. The Broncos will look to extend its consecutive series win streak to five against the Gaels after taking the series against Wake Forest, Utah, Sacramento State and San Diego.
In its last series against San Diego, the Broncos (13-5, 2-1 WCC) took two out of three games to open West Coast Conference play. It was the first conference opening series win for the Broncos since 2008.
Andre Nnebe returned to the Bronco lineup last weekend after being out all season with an injury. Nnebe made his presence immediately known getting an RBI double in his first at-bat and driving in six runs in the series.
On Monday, Jake Brodt was named WCC Player of the Week for the second time this season after he went 5-for-14 with three doubles, two home runs and drove in seven runs in the series against the Toreros. Defensively, Brodt played first base in the first two games and moved to third in the series finale to record 18 putouts and six assists without committing an error. The move to third base allowed the regular third baseman John Cresto to hit as the designated hitter while he returned from an injury and allowed the regular designated hitter, Niko Holm, to play first.
Another key to last weekend's success was the solid defense as the team did not commit an error in the entire series.
The Broncos are now 13-5 and off its best start since the 2012 team which started the season 13-3.
Games #19 - 21
Santa Clara, Calif. | Stephen Schott Stadium
All-Time Series: Santa Clara leads 161-119, last played in 2017
Friday, March 23 • 6 p.m. PT
SCU RHP Steven Wilson (3-0, 2.51 ERA) vs. Saint Mary's RHP Nick Frank (1-3, 4.40 ERA)
Saturday, March 24 • 1 p.m. PT
SCU RHP Alex Waldsmith (0-2, 2.75 ERA) vs. Saint Mary's RHP Kevin Milam (3-0, 2.22 ERA)
Sunday, March 25 • Noon PT
SCU TBA vs. Saint Mary's LHP Ken Waldichuk (3-1, 1.07 ERA)
|Live Stream / Video||
Tune in 10 minutes before the first pitch to listen to Bronco head coach Rusty Filter in the series opening pregame interview.
About Santa Clara
•Santa Clara is off to a 13-5 start, its best start since the 2012 season when it went 13-3.
•The Broncos have won four consecutive series (2-1 series win over Wake Forest Feb.23-25; 3-0 sweep over Utah March 2-4; 3-1 series win over Sacramento State March 8-11; and 2-1 series win over San Diego March 16-18).
•Santa Clara finished its nine game homestand on March 9 with an 8-1 record. On the season, the Broncos are 9-3 at home and 4-2 on the road.
•The Broncos are 4-0 in extra inning games this season with three of them coming off in walk-off fashion (Feb. 24 vs Wake Forest in 14 innings; March 4 vs Utah in 12 innings; March 8 vs Sacramento State in 10 innings, March 10 at Sacramento State in 10 innings).
•Bronco pitching staff has a cumulative 3.55 ERA with 13 pitchers seeing action on the mound.
•Joe Becht has reached base safely in all 18 games this season.
•John Cresto hit a home run in four consecutive games, all solo shots, from Feb. 23 - 27. He hit one in each game of the Wake Forest series as well as in the midweek game against Nevada.
•Closer Eric Lex recorded a save in three consecutive games from Feb. 27 - March 4.
•Sixth-year senior right-handed pitcher Steven Wilson and senior first baseman Jake Brodt were named captains for the 2018 Santa Clara squad.
•Senior first baseman Jake Brodt and junior third baseman John Cresto were named preseason All-West Coast Conference. Last season, Brodt was named first team All-WCC with Cresto being named honorable mention All-WCC.
Brodt's Two Grand Slams In One Inning
•Brodt hit two grand slams in the seventh inning on Feb. 17 against Boston College, becoming just the seventh Division I player to accomplish the feat since the NCAA began keeping records in 1957. He is the first to do so since 2000 when T.J. Soto of Louisiana Tech did it against Western
•Brodt's first grand slam came with the Broncos trailing 9-7 in the seventh inning and put them up for good. His second grand slam came with the Broncos up 16-9. In the first inning, Brodt hit a sacrifice fly for the first RBI of the game and in the sixth, Brodt hit a solo home run to finish the game 3-for-5 with three home runs and 10 RBIs.
•The Huntington Beach, California native's two grand slams in an inning was featured on ESPN's SportsCenter and was named NCBWA National Hitter of the Week and Rawlings West Coast Conference Player of the Week.
In Season Accolades
•Jake Brodt has twice been named the WCC Player of the Week this season on Feb. 19 after his two grand slam in an inning game and a month later on March 19 after going 5-for-14 with three doubles, two home runs and drove in seven runs against San Diego while playing first and third base.
•Sixth-year senior right-handed pitcher Steven Wilson made his first appearance out of the bullpen since 2014 in the season opener against Boston College (Feb. 16). He made first start of the year a week later against Wake Forest (Feb. 23), picking up the win/
•Wilson, redshirt sophomore right-handed pitchers Travis Howard and Freddie Erlandson returned to action in the season opening series against Boston College after missing all of last season due to injuries.
•Junior right-handed pitcher Luke Martin-Resnick and sophomore Alex Waldsmith each made their first career starts in the season opening series against Boston College (Feb. 16 & 17)
•Senior outfielder Anthony Geremia made his first career start at center field on Feb. 17.
•Erlandson was the pitcher on record in Rusty Filter's first win as Santa Clara head coach on Feb. 17.
•Sophomore Jason Dicochea hit his first collegiate home run vs San Jose State (Feb. 20).
•Fifth-year senior Penn Murfee picked up his first career save against San Jose State (Feb. 20) dating back to his days at Vanderbilt. Four days later, Murfee got his first career win against Wake Forest (Feb. 24) shutting out the Demon Deacons in the last five innings of the 14th inning walk-off win by the Broncos.
•Junior Austin Reyes hit his first career homerun, a three-run shot, against San Diego (March 16).
•Senior Joe Becht had his first multi home run game against San Diego (March 18), hitting two solo shots.
•Sophomore Andre Nnebe made his season debut against San Diego (March 16) returning from an injury.
•Freshman right-handed pitcher Cade Negley made his Bronco debut when he came in relief on opening day (Feb. 16) pitching an inning and giving up a hit and striking out a batter.
•Negley got his first win as a Bronco on March 4 vs Utah, pitching the last five innings in the 12th inning walk-off win.
•Negley picked up his first Bronco save against Sacramento State (March 9) pitching the last four innings to close out the game.
•Freshman catcher Tony Boetto got a single in his first two at-bats on Feb. 17. He also made his first career start against San Jose State (Feb. 20) behind the dish.
•Penn Murfee, a fifth-year senior transfer from Vanderbilt made his Bronco debut in relief on Feb. 17.
•Freshman RHP Kent Morrison and LHP Eric Madric made their Bronco debuts in relief on Feb. 25 against Wake Forest.
•Freshman Cory Moore made his Bronco debut on March 4 in game one of the doubleheader against Utah.
Hit By Pitch
•On Feb. 17, Boston College hit 10 Bronco players, tying an NCAA Division I record along with Baylor vs. TCU, March 6, 2012; Saint Joseph's vs. Fordham, April 5, 2009; Washington vs. Rice, May 22, 1998.
•Seven Broncos were hit in an inning (in the seventh) of the Feb. 17 game, breaking the NCAA Division I record (Previous record: 6—Hawaii vs. Hawaii Hilo, Feb. 8, 1998 (eighth inn.)
•Santa Clara is 17th in the nation (out of 297) in being hit by a pitch with 37. Florida A&M is first with 58.
About Saint Mary's
•Saint Mary's is coming off back-to-back 30-win seasons and appearances in the West Coast Conference Tournament.
•The Gaels were selected to finish third in the WCC's annual Preseason Coaches' Poll.
•Edward Haus and Kevin Milam were named to the Preseason All-WCC Team.
•Haus was a first team all-WCC selection last season. Haus led Saint Mary's with a .335 batting average while hitting six home runs and 21 doubles - the second most in a single season at Saint Mary's. He slugged .520 and tallied 44 RBIs while scoring 46 runs.
•Milam named the 2017 WCC Freshman of the Year after be burst onto the scene as a dominating two-way player. He batted .313 with 12 home runs and 55 RBIs at the plate while posting a 2.27 ERA, 3-1 record and nine saves in 22 appearances on the mound.