Washington Avoids Pac-10 Sweep With 7-3 Win Over USC

April 4, 2005

SEATTLE, Wash. - Zach Clem went 3-for-4 with a double and one RBI Monday as the Washington Huskies salvaged a 7-3 Pac-10 Conference victory over the USC Trojans at Husky Ballpark. The Huskies jumped out early with three runs in the first and did not relinquish the lead.

After the Huskies scored just one run in each of the first two games of the series, Clem and Matt Lane used RBI singles in the first against USC freshman right-hander Anthony Encinas, who was making his first collegiate start. Washington (18-12, 2-4) made it a 5-0 lead in the third on RBI singles by Kyle Larsen and Curt Rindal.

The Trojans attempted a rally in the fourth when they loaded the bases off Washington starter Matt Kasser (3-2) with no outs. Kasser worked out of the jam by getting USC third baseman Billy Hart to ground out into a 3-6-1 double play that scored the Trojans' first run and followed by a groundout to end the inning. The Huskies tried to return the favor with no outs and the bases loaded in the fifth against reliever Michael Friedman, but Friedman struck out the side without allowing a run.

Kasser allowed just a run on three hits through six innings before the Trojans chipped away with two runs in the seventh. Shortstop Blake Sharpe, who was hitless in the weekend series, finally got his first hit with a two-run double to right center with two outs. With a full count to the next batter, All-America catcher candidate Jeff Clement, Kasser rung up the final out of the inning on a called third strike on the outside corner. Two more insurance runs in the eighth sewed up the victory for the Huskies.

Clement extended his season-high hitting streak to 11 games with a 1-for-4 performance. He is batting .372 on the season and leading the team with six home runs, 24 RBI and 24 walks for a .530 on-base percentage.

Despite the loss, USC (17-9, 3-3) won the conference series and has won eight of its last 11 contests. The Trojans are just two games back of first-place Arizona in the conference standings.

USC begins a five-game homestand on Tuesday (April 5) against Pepperdine at 7 p.m. before hosting UCLA in a Pac-10 series beginning on Friday (April 8) at 7 p.m. The UCLA series will continue with a 2 p.m. start on Saturday (April 9) and 1 p.m. on Sunday (April 10).

USC	000-100-200---3-6-2UW	302-000-02x---7-9-0

WP-Kasser (3-2) LP-Encinas (0-1) S-Conover (4)T: 2:40 ATT: 166Records: USC (17-9, 3-3), Washington (18-12, 2-4)

Encinas, Guy (2), Friedman (4), Smith (6) and Clement.Kasser, Conover (8) and Lane.

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