Stanford Avoids Series Sweep With 14-9 Over No. 20/21 USC Baseball
March 11, 2007
PALO ALTO, Calif. - The Stanford Cardinal scored 10 times in its final two at-bats to forge a 14-9 nonconference victory against the No. 20/21 USC Trojans at Sunken Diamond. Stanford (11-8) rallied from a four-run deficit in the seventh to avoid the series sweep by USC.
Michael Taylor went 4-for-5 with five RBI for the Cardinal while Max Fearnow (2-1) closed out the game with two scoreless innings, allowing two hits.
Senior third baseman Hector Estrella (Rosemead/Northview HS) went 2-for-4 with four RBI for USC (15-9). Sophomore starter Tommy Milone went six innings and allowed four runs on five hits with no walks and four strikeouts.
With one out in the Stanford first, Milone hit Sean Ratliff on a 2-2 pitch and then was called for a balk to advance Ratliff to second. Taylor followed with an RBI double to left and later scored on Brent Milleville's RBI single up the middle. Brian Juhl's RBI double made it a 3-0 Stanford lead after one inning.
Milone settled down after the three-run inning, retiring the next 11 Stanford batters in a row until second baseman Cord Phelps led off the fifth with a double down the left field line.
Estrella registered the first run for USC with an RBI single to score Derek Perren, who hit a one-run double in the second inning. In the top of the third, freshman catcher Robert Stock walked for the second time in the game and Lucas Duda then hit an infield single. Michael Torres sacrificed to advance both runners and Perren walked to load the bases. Gallagher worked Estrella to a 1-2 count, but Estrella laced a two-run single to left to tie the game at 3-3.
Sophomore center fielder Nick Buss led off the fourth with a double for the Trojans, knocking Gallagher out of the game. Freshman shortstop Grant Green then sacrificed Buss to third and junior Matt Cusick plated Buss on an RBI sacrifice fly to right as USC held the lead for the first time, 4-3. Estrella added his fourth RBI in the fifth when he brought home Michael Torres with a sacrifice fly to center.
Both teams traded a run in the fifth before USC scored three times in the seventh to take the 8-4 lead. Stock led off with a double and scored on pinch hitter J.J. Owen's single to center. Right fielder Anthony Vasquez then blasted a two-run double off the fence in right to score Darren Gemoll and Owen.
Stanford answered with four runs in the bottom of the inning to tie the game at 8-8. The Cardinal quickly loaded the bases off reliever Shawn Olsen. Taylor brought home two runs with a single to right, followed by pinch hitter Jason Castro's RBI single to right off freshman Kevin Couture. Juhl was intentionally walked to load the bases again after Stock was charged with a passed ball. Joey August then tied the game with an RBI sacrifice fly to right.
Stock singled home a run in the eighth as the Trojans led, 9-8, but Taylor tied the game in the bottom half on an 0-2 pitch by Hector Rabago with a chopper up the middle. After a walk to Castro to load the bases, Rabago hit Juhl on the 1-2 pitch to push across the go-ahead run. A two-run single by August and two-run triple by Grant Escue put the game away for the Cardinal.
The Trojans return home to host Portland on Wednesday (March 14) at 5 p.m. Wednesday's game will be broadcast live on usctrojans.com.
USC 012-110-310---9-13-0STAN 300-010-46x---14-13-0
WP - Fearnow (2-1) LP - Couture (2-1)T - 3:42 ATT - 2,116Records: USC (15-9), Stanford (11-8)
Milone, Olsen (7), Couture (7), Rabago (9) and Stock.Gallagher, Stringer (4), Stilson (5), Clauson (7), Hancock (7), Davis (8), Fearnow (8) and Juhl.