No. 24/23 USC Looks 'Sharpe' In 15-3 Win Over Washington State

May 14, 2005

LOS ANGELES - Junior shortstop Blake Sharpe (Moorpark/Moorpark HS/L.A. Pierce College) went 4-for-4 with a home run and career-high five RBI Saturday as the No. 24/23 USC Trojans defeated the Washington State Cougars, 15-3, in Pac-10 action at Dedeaux Field. The Trojans scored a season-high eight runs in the first inning that took 42 minutes to complete.

Sharpe, as the leadoff hitter, reached safely in all six plate appearances, which included a walk and being hit by a pitch.

Freshman Anthony Encinas (5-3) threw five strong innings in relief for the Trojans, allowing only one run on three hits with a walk and six strikeouts.

USC (31-15, 11-6) has taken the first two games of the series and won four straight while Washington State dropped to 20-31 overall and 0-17 in Pac-10 play.

Freshman Roberto Lopez had his first career three-hit game in a 3-for-4 day with two RBI while Cyle Hankerd went 3-for-5 with two doubles and three RBI.

The Cougars scored two runs in the first off Trojan starter Brett Bannister, who was making his first start since March 25 vs. Arizona State. Jason Freeman singled to center and advanced to third on a throwing error by Bannister off a pickoff attempt. He scored on an RBI groundout by Jay Miller. Brady Everett followed with a solo shot to left, his 14th of the season. Everett went 2-for-4 with two RBI.

USC answered in the bottom of the inning. WSU starter James Freeman (7-6) did not record an out as the first five batters reached base after Hankerd hit a two-run, ground-rule double to start the scoring. Later in the inning, reliever Travis Webb gave up back-to-back walks with the bases loaded to USC's Jeff Clement and Billy Hart. A total of 14 Trojan batters went to the plate in the first.

Sharpe hit a three-run homer in the sixth for his third home run of the season.

The series concludes tomorrow at noon before the Trojans embark on a five-game, seven-day road trip with games at Notre Dame and No. 3 Oregon State. Tomorrow's game will be broadcast live, along with Gametracker live stats, on usctrojans.com.

WSU	201-000-000---3-6-1USC	820-103-10x---15-18-1

WP-Encinas (5-3) LP-James Freeman (7-6)T: 2:51 ATT: 752Records: USC (31-15, 11-6), WSU (20-31, 0-17)

James Freeman, Webb (1), Oye (4), Dingwall (8) and Everett, Franklin (8).Bannister, Encinas (2), Williams (7), Martlaro (9) and Clement.

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