California Holds Off #9 Stanford Baseball, 3-2, To End Cardinal's Five-Game Win Streak
March 3, 2001
Stanford, Calif. - California (10-5) snapped a five-game win streak for #9 Stanford (14-5) and handed the Cardinal its first home loss of the season with a dramatic 3-2 victory over the Cardinal in a non-conference game at Sunken Diamond on Saturday. Brian Horwitz singled home pinch runner Nick Medrano with one out in the top of the ninth inning for the eventual game-winning run. Reliever Matt Brown came in with one out and the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth inning to retire both batters he faced and earn his second save of the season. The teams have now split the first two games of the series and are scheduled to play the rubber game on Sunday (1:00 p.m.).
Stanford had plenty of chances to extend its winning streak and remain undefeated at home, leaving a season-high 16 runners on base. The Cardinal left the bases loaded in each of the final four innings. In the ninth inning, Stanford loaded the bases off winning pitcher David Cash (4-1) on a single by Jonny Ash and a pair of walks to Ryan Garko and Carlos Quentin. However, Brown came on to strike out pinch hitter Mario Garza and force Andy Topham into a game-ending groundout.
'We left a lot of guys on base and had a lot of opportunities,' admitted Stanford head coach Mark Marquess. 'We just couldn't get a hit when we needed it. You can't miss that many opportunities but you have to give their pitchers credit. They came up with big pitches and big strikeouts when they had to.'
Cal took an early 1-0 lead in the top of the second inning. Rob Meyer's sacrifice fly scored Conor Jackson, who had singled with one out and moved to third on a single by Carson White.The Golden Bears held their 1-0 lead until Stanford pushed a run across in the bottom of the sixth inning on a sacrifice fly by Garko to score Arik VanZandt, who had been hit by a pitch to lead off the inning.
Cal regained a 2-1 lead on an RBI single by Jeff Dragicevich in the top of the seventh inning but the Cardinal tied the game again at 2-2 on a one-out solo home run by Quentin in the bottom of the eighth.
'I think I know I'm going to get something to hit (in a clutch situation) because the pitcher is in the same situation,' said Quentin about his growing reputation as a clutch hitter. 'Being in a clutch situation doesn't affect me, I guess I enjoy it.'
Mike Wodnicki (1-1) suffered the loss for Stanford, his first in a Cardinal uniform after compiling an 8-0 record over his first two-plus seasons. Wodnicki gave up three hits and a run in the ninth inning.
Both starting pitchers were effective. Stanford's Jeff Bruksch scattered five hits and one run through the first 5.1 innings, while Cal's Ryan Atkinson pitched 4.0 innings of one-hit baseball before being removed for reliever Brian Montalbo prior to the bottom of the fifth inning.
Meyer (2-3, RBI) and John Baker (2-3) led Cal's offense with a pair of hits each. Quentin (2-3, 2B, HR, RBI) and Topham (2-5, 2B) led Stanford's offense.
Stanford's tough luck in one-run games continued as all five of Stanford's losses this season have come by a single run. The Cardinal is 1-5 in one-run games in 2001.
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