Cougars Host California In Series-Opener Thursday
April 11, 2006
PULLMAN, Wash. - A QUICK LOOK AT CALIFORNIA: The Golden Bears enter the week with a 16-16 record, 4-5 in Pac-10 play...Cal will host Hawaii in Tuesday's mid-week game before heading north for the weekend series...Cal is coming off a three-game sweep at the hands of USC, including one-run losses in the opening two contests...in its first two conference series, Cal took two of three from both Washington and Arizona.
PRINCE NAMED TOP FRESHMAN: WSU right fielder/pitcher Jared Prince was named the top freshman in the country by Baseball America in their 2006 midseason report released last week...Prince's .411 batting average and 1.32 ERA have helped the Cougars to a 22-12 record at the midseason mark...the freshman has surrendered only four earned runs in 27.1 innings of work, posting a 4-0 record in four starts with a 17-5 strikeout-to-walk ratio...the 6-foot-3 Poulsbo native has started 32 games, whether it is on the mound or patrolling right and center field, where he has tallied nine assists and committed no errors...at the plate, Prince has picked up a team leading 32 RBI's, while ripping 12 doubles, second only to All-Pac-10 candidate Jay Miller.
WSU-CALIFORNIA ALL-TIME SERIES: California leads the all-time series, 32-23-1, including a 14-10 advantage in Pac-10 play since 1999...Cal swept all three games last season when the series was played at Berkeley after the Cougars took two of three during the 2004 series at Pullman...when playing in Pullman, the Golden Bears hold an 11-5 edge, dating back the first game of the series in 1902.
GAMETIME CHANGE FOR CALIFORNIA SERIES: Friday's Game Two (Apr. 14) of this week's Pacific-10 Conference home series against California has been moved to a 6 p.m. first pitch...the game was originally scheduled for a 2 p.m. start but was moved back to 6 p.m...Thursday's game remains with a 6 p.m. start while Saturday's finale remains unchanged with a 1 p.m. first pitch...the series begins on Thursday so that the series finale was not scheduled to be played on Easter Sunday (April 15).
UCLA RECAP: The Bruins came away with two of the three wins, although the Cougars had the tying run at the plate in both of their losses...in the opener, UCLA jumped out to a 9-0 lead before WSU Battled back...tailing 9-5 in the 9th, the Coug as loaded the bases with no outs but could not push any more across...WSU needed 10 innings in Game Two as Jared Prince drove in Travis Coulter with the game-winner...Travis Webb set the Bruins down in order in the bottom of the inning for his third save...Webb was part of four relievers who worked 7 2/3 innings of scoreless relief...WSU led 4-0 in the finale, but the Bruins took control with a five-run sixth inning...for the series Ryan Krauser, Simi Reynolds and Jeff Miller each had five hits, with Miller adding his sixth home run and four RBIs.
MILLER CLIMBING CAREER HITS CHART: Left fielder Jay Miller continued his assault on the Cougar all-time hits list by moving into second place following the Arizona State series...the senior from Bellevue currently has 278 career hits, second on the all-time list behind only Mike Kinkade's (1992-95) 304...Miller needs 26 more hits to tie Kinkade, currently the only Cougar to break 300 career hits.
WSU IN PAC-10 PITCHING: The Cougar pitching staff fell to third in the Pac-10 in team ERA following the latest release of conference statistics...WSU had led the conference the last three weeks, but dropped two notches with a team ERA of 3.81, trailing leader UCLA (3.44) and Oregon State (3.52)...as a squad the Cougars lead the conference in fewest home runs allowed (7) and are second in fewest walks allowed (95)...junior Wayne Daman Jr., is eighth in ERA (3.12), eighth in opposing batting average (.240), 10th in strikeouts (49) and tied for fifth in wins (5)...also among the pitchers leaders are junior Nick Ison, who is second in opposing batting average (.197) and tied for fourth in fewest walks allowed (9)...freshman Jared Prince (1.32) would lead the conference in ERA but is 6.2 innings shy of the qualifying standard...Prince would also rank in the Top 10 in opposing batting average (8th, .240) and fewest walks allowed (2nd, 5).
COUGS AMONG CONFERENCE LEADERS: Offensively, WSU is in second place in the Pac-10 hitting race with a .320 average, trailing only USC (.322)...the Cougs lead the conference in runs scored (257), hit by pitch (62), stolen bases (59) and attempts (82), are second in doubles (74) and hits (390), and third in on base percentage (.404) and RBIs (223)... senior Jay Miller (.418) leads the Pac-10 in hitting with teammate Jared Prince (.411), third...Miller also leads the conference in doubles (20) and hits (59), while Prince is second in on-base percentage (.510) and tied for seventh in hits (46).
COUGARS STRONG IN EXTRA INNINGS: WSU's 4-3, 10-inning victory Saturday over UCLA was the second extra-inning victory in as many games this season...WSU also earned a 13-12, 10-inning win in the opener at Hawaii-Hilo (2/16)...in the Hilo game Jim Murphy's one-out home run accounted for the winning run while Jared Prince drove in Travis Coulter with the winning run at UCLA.
KRAUSER CONTINUES HOT START: Outfielder Ryan Krauser missed the first 24 games of the season due to injury, but judging by his performance the past three weeks, the layoff did not hurt...the junior has hit safely in nine of 10 games played, batting .469 (15-32) in that stretch...he hit .583 (7-12) in the Stanford series then last week batted .500 (5-10) at UCLA... Krauser has six multi-hit games, including a season-high three in Game Two at Stanford, an 8-5 Cougar victory.
COUGAR NOTES: WSU is hitting .305 in conference action, second only to ASU...the Cougs have collected 20 double-digit hitting game so far this season and has 20-plus hits on three occasions, including a season-best 23 against Chicago State (3/7)...sophomore Nick Cebula allowed his first earned run over his last 10 outings (8.0 innings), in the finale Sunday at UCLA...freshman Travis Coulter has hit safely in 13 of his last 15, batting .333 (19-57) in that span... junior Nick Ison has missed his last two starts due to a sore shoulder...Ison hopes to return to the mound for this week's Pac-10 series against California...junior Wayne Daman Jr. ranks 10th in the Pac-10 in strikeouts with 49...he has matched his career-high of 9 strikeouts four times this season ...since returning from an injury that forced him to miss four games in mid March, sophomore Paul Gran has been swinging a hot bat...after his nine-game hitting streak ended against Gonzaga (4/4), Gran has hit safely in each of the last three, he currently has the team's longest hitting streak at nine games, batting .302 (16-53) in that stretch, scoring 10 runs in 13 games...sophomore lefty Steve Kost allowed his first earned run of the season in the finale at UCLA...Kost worked just 1/3 of an inning, surrendering one run on three hits...for the season Kost has a 0.82 ERA in 11.0 innings of work...junior Ryan Krauser is hitting a team-leading .448 (13-29) through his first three Pac-10 series after missing the opening 24 games with an elbow injury...Krauser is tied for second in hits with 13 and sixth in on-base percentage (.484)...senior Jay Miller continued to lead the Pac-10 in hitting with a .418 average...Miller ranks among the Top 10 in 11 offensive categories...junior Jeff Miller had his first four-hit game of the season Sunday against UCLA...Miller also leads the team in home runs with six, and multi-RBI games with nine...sophomore Jim Murphy has hit safely in 14 of WSU's last 16 games, batting .345 (20-58) in that span...freshman Jared Prince continues to lead the team in RBIs with 32 on the season...sophomore Simi Reynolds is second on the team with a .429 batting average (9-21) in Pac-10 play...sophomore Scott Suttmeier had his first RBIs of the season in Friday's opener at UCLA, lining a two-run single in the seventh...junior Travis Webb registered his team-leading third save of the season with a 1-2-3 10th inning Saturday at UCLA opener.
COUGARS ON THE RADIO: All remaining Washington State University baseball games can be heard live on KCLX Radio (1450 AM), Colfax...in addition, all games can also be heard online at www.wsucougars.com.