Baseball Opens Pac-10 Play With 11-3 Win Against California

March 28, 2002

LOS ANGELES - Freshman left-handed starter Matt Chico (Fallbrook/Fallbrook HS) struck out 13 batters in seven innings Thursday and the USC Trojans opened Pac-10 Conference play with an 11-3 win against the California Golden Bears at Dedeaux Field. Junior Alberto Concepcion went 4-for-4 for the Trojans with a double, triple and two RBI as USC snapped its four-game losing streak.

USC is now 13-13 on the season (1-0 in Pac-10 play) while California falls to 19-12 overall (3-1 in Pac-10 play).

Chico (4-2) turned in his best performance this season, allowing two runs on four hits with only one walk. The Golden Bears took an early lead in the first on a solo shot by first baseman Conor Jackson, his 10th home run of the season. Jackson hit an RBI double in the fourth for a 2-0 California lead, but Chico registered three strikeouts in the inning to end the threat.

Third baseman Mark McCauley walked for the Trojans in the fourth and scored on Concepcion's triple that bounced off the wall in right field. Concepcion scored when first baseman Bill Peavey tied the game with a groundout to second.

USC took the lead in the sixth on an RBI double by center fielder Brian Barre and RBI single by Concepcion.

California rallied in the eighth against USC reliever Jon Williams. The Golden Bears loaded the bases with Carson White hitting a sacrifice fly to make it a 5-3 lead for the Trojans, but Williams struck out Brian Horwitz looking to end the inning. Williams registered his second save of the season with two innings in relief (3 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 2 SO).

The Trojans scored six runs in the eighth, including two-run doubles with the bases loaded by designated hitter Joey Metropoulos and pinch-hitter Matt Bonovich.

The series will continue tomorrow at 6 p.m. with the series finale on Saturday (March 30) at 1 p.m. Both games will be broadcast, along with Live Stats play-by-play, on www.usctrojans.com.

California   100-100-010 - 3-7-0USC          000-202-16x - 11-13-0

WP - Chico (4-2) LP - Hutchinson (6-3) S - Williams (2)Hutchinson, Read (7), Gross (8) and Kahoalii.Chico, Williams (8) and Concepcion.T - 2:46 ATT - 452

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