June 1, 2013
Covey Comes Up Big for USD
By Abbey Mastracco
Special to CollegeBaseballInsider.com
LOS ANGELES —
The battle for the baseball bragging rights of
the City of San Diego played out Saturday afternoon three hours
north of the city itself. With San Diego’s most famous baseball
player at the helm of one and a player tabbed as the next Evan
Longoria leading the other team, it was a win-or-go-home
Ultimately, it was the No. 3-seeded University of
San Diego that lived to fight another day, effectively taking
the bragging rights they lost earlier in the season with a 6-3
comeback win over their fourth-seeded intercity rival San Diego
State in the Los Angeles Regional at Jackie Robinson Stadium.
For San Diego State (31-31), it ended a rocky
season in which they overachieved with a hot finish at the
Mountain West Conference tournament. But the young group
ultimately wasn’t quite ready for a postseason run.
“We didn’t play great here the last few days,”
San Diego State coach Tony Gwynn said. “I thought it got a
little sped up, a little fast, we kind of tried to force the
issue. But overall, I’m really proud of this group.”
USD (36-24) avoided going down in two games at
the same Regional two years in a row. Dylan Covey, who has taken
lumps throughout his college career trying to regain his stature
as a dominant pitcher while also learning to deal with his Type
1 diabetes diagnosis, had a performance to remember.
The All-American right-hander Covey (5-4) went
7.2 innings, surrendering three earned and striking out two in
“The scouting report said he was kind of all over
the place,” Aztecs first baseman Ryan Muno said. “He’s an AFLAC
All-American, all credit to him. He’s a good pitcher. It was
just a matter of him throwing strikes, and today he kind of
“This has been us all year,” Toreros head coach
Rich Hill said. “You look at Troy Conyers in the WCC
championship, Dylan Covey today and all that he’s been through,
to come out on the biggest stage and throw a gem like that.”
For Covey, it was in important start to prove
what he couldn’t in the first game of the season, when he lasted
just three innings against the Aztecs, giving up six runs (five
earned) on eight hits.
“I started the first game of the season against
San Diego State and kind of got touched up a little bit,” Covey
said. “A lot of their guys, they have kind of an interesting
game plan. They work to pull but then they can touch that inside
fastball so nothing could be over the middle of the plate. And
the offspeed had to be dirty as can be and it was today.”
It was Michael Cederoth (3-9) who looked to have
the better stuff initially. The Aztecs maintained a 2-0 lead
until the bottom of the fifth when the Toreros broke out.
A bases-loaded walk to Connor Joe put the Toreros
on the board, and Cederoth then was pulled in favor of Philip
“All the pressure was on him, he had to come to
me,” USD catcher Austin Green said. “All I was looking for was
Green got his pitch, a fastball, and drove a
double through the left gap to score two.
San Diego scored two more in the inning after
shortstop Evan Potter overthrew a cutoff at third and tacked on
one more in the sixth.
The Toreros will face the loser of Saturday’s
nightcap between No. 1 UCLA and No. 2 Cal Poly, Sunday afternoon
at 2 p.m.