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Sunday Regional Scores
UC Irvine Tops SDSU in
By Abbey Mastracco
Special to CollegeBaseballInsider.com
IRVINE, Calif. - It might have been a
sunny day in Orange Country Sunday afternoon, but as far as the
San Diego State Aztecs were concerned they needed an umbrella.
SDSU desperately needed something to shelter themselves from the
deluge of hits top-ranked UC Irvine made rain down at Anteater
After being shut out on their home field the night before by No.
7 Virginia, UC Irvine was determined to set up a rematch. The
Anteaters ensured this by striking early and often. Nineteen
hits powered UC Irvine to a 14-3 win over SDSU in the second
elimination game of the Irvine Regional.
The elimination of the Aztecs ended their first postseason run
in 18 years. Head coach Tony Gwynn felt his team lost to what
was a very impressive UC Irvine club. The Anteaters impressed
the Hall of Famer in almost every fundamental way.
“I’ll buy into it,” Gwynn said. “They exploited just about
everything they could. They moved the ball around, played hit
and run. They force you to make plays defensively.”
The Anteaters (45-14) put up at least one run in six innings and
wore down the Aztecs (41-23) in nearly three and 1/2 hours of
“We just couldn’t keep up with them offensively,” Gwynn said.
“It wasn’t so much the long ball today. They just dead squared
up on balls and put the bat on them.”
Right-hander Crosby Slaught (8-0) pitched solidly through just
over five innings getting the win for the Anteaters. The Aztecs
didn’t exactly get the same mileage out of starter Craig
Rasmussen (1-2), as the southpaw lasted just an inning and 2/3
in only his second start of the season.
“He was a better fit, we thought,” Gwynn said. Gwynn chose the
reliever over starters Jon Berger and Ryan O’Sullivan, who he
had said were the favorites to start after Saturday’s game. “I
thought Craig would be able to change speeds better. I thought
he would be better at holding runners on, maybe make them think
about their running game a little bit.”
Down 4-0, the Aztecs came back in the fourth inning to match two
of Irvine’s runs. Berger retired the side in order in the bottom
of the frame but pitched himself into trouble soon thereafter.
With two on and one out in the bottom of the fifth, Berger
looked to be almost out of the inning when an Irvine base
running blunder put the second out on the board. Berger then
gave up back-to-back doubles to Casey Stevenson and Jeff Cusick,
allowing the Anteaters to plate two more. Dillon Bell then laced
a single to right and advanced to second on the throw, driving
in one more and driving up the score to 7-2.
San Diego State was able to push one more across the plate in
the next inning, but Irvine put up five more in the seventh and
one more in the eighth to put the game completely out of reach.
Five Anteaters had multi-hit games with Ben Orloff (3 for 5, 3
RBI, 3 R, 2B, BB), Ronnie Shaeffer (3 for 4, 3 RBI, 1 R), Casey
Stevenson (3 for 4, 1 RBI, 2 R, 2 2B), Jeff Cusick (4 for 5, 2
RBI, 2 R, 2B) and Dillon Bell (3 for 3, 2 RBI, 1 R) all having
monster days at the plate.
The win moved UC Irvine to 8-5 in regional games and gave head
coach Mike Gillespie his 850th career win.