Cougars Set To Host No. 12 Arizona In Pac-10 Series

April 19, 2007

PULLMAN, Wash. -

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Cougars vs. No. 12 Arizona
Fri. - Sun, April 19-21
Fri. 5:30 p.m. • Sat. 2 p.m. • Sun. Noon
Bailey-Brayton Field • Pullman, Wash.
Radio: KCLX Radio (1450 AM)

Series Record: Arizona leads 21-11

Last Meeting: WSU took 2 of 3 at Tucson last season

The Cougars improved to 2-1 in the season series over the Bulldogs after posting a 7-4 win Tuesday in the first night game at Patterson Baseball Complex. Cody Bartlett drove in four runs, the majority on a second-inning three-run home run, while Ross Humes worked 2 1/3 innings of scoreless relief to pick up his sixth save. WSU collected 14 hits on the night, three by Paul Gran, while Greg Lagreid added a home run and three runs scored.

A little over half way through the 2007 season and left-hander reliever Ross Humes has already broken into the single-season top 10 in saves. Against Illinois-Chicago the sophomore worked two scoreless innings to registered his fifth save of 2007, tying him for ninth on the Cougars single-season list. Last Tuesday at Gonzaga Humes picked up No. 6, working 2 1/3 innings of scoreless relief to move into a tie for 5th on the single-season list. Humes has been stellar in save situations this season, converting all six opportunities while allowing just four hits in 11 2/3 innings of work. In that span he has fanned 12 and walked only two, with all four hits being singles. Prior to Tuesday, Humes had gone seven appearances in between saves.

In last Saturday's game at Arizona State, senior Jeff Miller connected for his first home run since Mar. 12 against Rider, ending a streak of 60 at-bats without a round-tripper. Miller's solo blast in the ninth innings brought the Cougars to within one before falling 4-3. In Sunday's contest, Miller again connected for a ninth-inning home run, this one a three-run shot to regain sole possession of the home run lead with six on the season. It was the second time this season Miller and homered in back-to-back games, the first time coming in the final two games of the San Jose State series.

Legendary Cougar coach Bobo Brayton and former WSU All-American John Olerud have been inducted into the College Baseball Foundation, it was announced recently. The two will join 13 others that comprise the 2007 Induction Class into the new College Baseball Hall of Fame in Lubbock, Texas. In addition to Brayton and Olerud, the Class of 2007 includes legendary coaches Jim Brock of Arizona State, Bibb Falk of Texas, Jerry Kindall of Arizona and Dick Siebert of Minnesota, along with former standout players Jim Abbott of Michigan, Pete Incaviglia of Oklahoma State, Fred Lynn of USC, Phil Stephenson of Wichita State and Derek Tatsuno of Hawai'i. The 2007 induction class will be officially enshrined during a three-day celebration of college baseball, July 2-4, at the College Baseball Hall of Fame in Lubbock, Texas. Brayton retired from WSU at the conclusion of the 1994 season with a career record of 1,161-523-8 in 33 seasons at the time the fourth winningest baseball coach in NCAA D-I history. In his three years on the Palouse Olerud combined to hit .434 with 37 doubles, 33 home runs, 131 RBI and a .824 slugging percentage. Even more impressively, as a pitcher he was 26-4 with a 3.17 ERA (85 ER/241.1 IP) and 169 strikeouts in 39 career appearances (34 starts).

Following this weekend's series against Arizona, the Cougars remain at home for a Tuesday matchup against Gonzaga at 5:30 p.m. It marks the fourth and final meeting of the season between the two teams, with WSU winning both games in Spokane and the Bulldogs taking the first contest in Pullman. WSU then heads south for a Pac-10 series at USC beginning Friday. The Cougars took two of three last season from the Trojans in Pullman, earning the first series win over USC since the 1969 season. Gametimes for the weekend series are 7 p.m. Friday, 2 p.m. Saturday and noon Sunday.

The Wildcats enter the weekend series with a No. 12 national ranking and a 30-7 record, 8-1 and in first place in Pac-10 conference play. Arizona saw its 16-game winning streak snapped in its last outing, a 6-3 loss at Stanford. The streak was the longest by a Wildcat team since opening the 1998 season 16-0. Last season WSU took two of three games in Tucson, dropping the first before claiming the final two. Arizona opened conference play by sweeping series against Oregon State and California, before taking two of three at Stanford. Sophomore Brad Gleen is one of seven Wildcat regulars hitting over .300, leading the team with a .366 average. C.J. Ziegler leads the team with eight home runs while Glenn is the top RBI man with 46. Sophomore Preston Guilmet is the staff ace, boasting a 7-0 record with a 1.58 ERA. Sophomore Daniel Schlereth is 1-0 with a 1.33 and a team-best eight saves. He has registered 35 strikeouts in 20.1 innings. As a team the Wildcats are hitting .314 this season while the pitching staff has a combined 3.77 ERA.

Coming in to the 2007 season, WSU head coach Donnie Marbut made finishing series a point of emphasis. Through the first nine series of the season, the point has been received. WSU is 7-2 in series-ending games, winning 6-1 at Northridge, 7-6 at Texas, 7-4 at San Jose State, 11-0 against Rider, 9-3 against Illinois-Chicago, 2-1 against BYU and 9-6 at California, while dropping series-ending games against Washington, 6-5 and at Arizona State 16-6. Equally impressive is the fact that all of the wins, excluding Texas and California, clinched series wins for WSU. Last season WSU was 5-7 in series-ending games.

Cody Bartlett has played just two games at Gonzaga's new Patterson Baseball Complex, but it might just be his favorite collegiate park. The freshman from Kent, Wash., has hit both of his home runs this season at Patterson, both three-run shots to left, and both in Cougar victories. In his two games Bartlett is hitting .375 (3-8), with two home runs, seven RBIs and three runs scored.

Sophomore outfielder Jared Prince, who struggled to find his stroke early in the season, is once again swinging a hot bat. The Poulsbo, Wash. native has raised his average 40 points over the past six games as in that stretch he is hitting .409 (9-22), including going 6-for-12 (.500) at Arizona State last weekend. Prince leads the team in Pac-10 play with a .353 average.

Since becoming an every day starter 15 games again, freshman Cody Bartlett has collected five multi-hit games and is hitting .269 in that time, raising his average from .171 to .230...senior Zach Borba remains perfect in the stolen base category, having swiped nine bags in nine attempts this season...freshman Matt Fanelli received his first two Pac-10 starts in the final two games at Arizona State...Fanelli collected three hits in seven at-bats, scoring once...for the season he is hitting .280 (7-25) the series finale at ASU, junior Paul Gran had his first multi-hit game since Mar. 25 against Washington...Gran went 2-for-4 with a double and 2 RBIs Sunday against the Sun Devils...sophomore Ross Humes remains a perfect 6-for-6 in save opportunities this his last outing Humes recorded save No. 6 by working 2 1/3 innings of scoreless relief at Gonzaga...junior Steve Kost did not allow an earned run in 2.3 innings (2 outings) of work at ASU with four strikeouts.....senior outfielder Ryan Krauser had to leave the series finale at Cal in the bottom of the first inning when he crashed into the outfield wall chasing a fly ball...Krauser has not played since and his status is up in the air for the Arizona series...sophomore catcher Greg Lagreid continues to flex his muscle as he connected for his sixth home run of the season Tuesday at Gonzaga...Lagreid hit just one home run last season...sophomore outfielder Jared Prince leads the team with 22 RBIs this season and is hitting a team-high .353 in Pac-10 play...freshman Michael Ratigan picked up his second win of the season Tuesday at Gonzaga as he started and worked five innings, five hits with two strikeouts...junior Scott Suttmeier saw his team-leading 11-game hitting streak snapped in the second game of the ASU series.
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