This Week In Pac-10 Baseball

March 18, 2003

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Pac-10 Notes:The 2003 Pac-10 Conference season kicks off this Friday as six teams go head-to-head ... Winners of five in a row, including series sweeps over Portland and Wagner last week, ARIZONA hosts USC in a three-game series, while WASHINGTON STATE heads to the Bay Area to take on CALIFORNIA after mid-week games against Portland ... Holding on to its No. 1 ranking in both Collegiate Baseball and Sports Weekly/ESPN's latest polls, ARIZONA STATE will take on STANFORD at Packard Stadium ... The Cardinal hasn't played since March 9, the last day of a three-game non-conference series against Cal ... UC Santa Barbara will face OREGON STATE beginning Sat., March 22 ... UCLA is set to play Wichita State, who is ranked 29th by Collegiate Baseball magazine, in a two-game series March 22 and 23 ... WASHINGTON, winners of 10 in a row, will head south to go up against UC Irvine starting Fri., March 21.

Tue., March 18New Mexico at ARIZONA, 7 p.m.Wichita State at ARIZONA STATE, 7 p.m.CALIFORNIA at St. Mary's, 2 p.m.UCLA at Tulane, 2 p.m.USC at San Diego State, 2 p.m.WASHINGTON STATE at Portland, 2 p.m.

Wed., March 19New Mexico at ARIZONA, 3 p.m.Wichita State at ARIZONA STATE, 7 p.m.

Fri., March 21*USC at ARIZONA, 7 p.m.WASHINGTON at UC Irvine, 6 p.m.*WASHINGTON STATE at CALIFORNIA, 2 p.m.

Sat., March 22UC Santa Barbara at OREGON STATE, 1 p.m.*STANFORD at ARIZONA STATE, 7 p.m.Wichita State at UCLA, 1 p.m.*USC at ARIZONA, 1 p.m.WASHINGTON at UC Irvine, 6 p.m.*WASHINGTON STATE at CALIFORNIA, 1 p.m.

Sun., March 23UC Santa Barbara at OREGON STATE, 1 p.m.*STANFORD at ARIZONA STATE, 1 p.m.Wichita State at UCLA, 1 p.m.*USC at ARIZONA, 1 p.m.WASHINGTON at UC Irvine, 1 p.m.*WASHINGTON STATE at CALIFORNIA, 1 p.m.

Mon., March 24UC Santa Barbara at OREGON STATE, noon*STANFORD at ARIZONA STATE, 4:30 p.m.

All game times local to site.

ARIZONA (0-0, 17-7)Last Week: vs. Portland W, 19-5; W, 15-12; vs. Wagner W, 15-0; W, 20-0; W, 13-1This Week: New Mexico, *USC

Arizona is riding a five-game win streak after posting series sweeps over Portland and Wagner last week ... The Wildcats play two games against New Mexico, once on the road and once at home, before opening Pac-10 play against USC on Fri., March 21 ... UA is ranked 20th in Collegiate Baseball's latest poll ... Sophomore Jeff Van Houten was named Pac-10 Player of the Week with a performance that included him going 10-for-14 (.714) with three home runs, two triples, seven runs scored and 14 RBI last week ... Joe Little surrendered just one hit over six innings, as he and two relievers combined to shutout Wagner 20-0 on two hits on Fri, March 14 ... The junior struck out nine batters on 91 pitches, while walking just a pair ... The shutout was the fifth for Arizona this season.

ARIZONA STATE (0-0, 30-2)Last Week: vs. Oklahoma L, 6-5; W, 10-3; W, 10-2This Week: Wichita State, *Stanford

Arizona State is showing no signs of cooling down, as they have amassed a 30-2 overall record through the halfway point of the season ... They will face nationally ranked teams this week in Wichita State and Conference opponent, Stanford ... The Sun Devils had their 19-game winning streak come to an end with a 6-5 loss to Oklahoma to start the three-game series, but rebounded by winning the next two games by a combined score of 20-5 ... The Devils hit .340 in the series with 13 doubles, including a series high seven in Saturday's 10-3 win ... The pitchers combined for an impressive 2.67 ERA in the three games and now have a combined staff ERA of 3.07 for the year ... The program played with a No. 1 national ranking for the first time since the end of the 1993 season.

CALIFORNIA (0-0, 13-9)Last Week: vs. UC Irvine W, 8-7 (12); L, 9-3; W, 2-0This Week: Saint Mary's, *Washington State

California took two of three from UC Irvine last weekend to bring its overall record to 13-9 on the 2003 season ... The Bears have one mid-week game against St. Mary's before taking on Washington State in their first Conference action this year ... In Cal's 8-7 12-inning win over UC Irvine, head coach David Esquer earned his 100th career victory ... Esquer now has a career record of 101- 89 (.532) in his fourth season leading the Bears ... The team has a 8-3 record at Evans Diamond this season ... Junior catcher Chris Grossman went 5-for-14 (.357) with two doubles, two home runs and five RBI in last weekend's series ... In the 8-7, extra-inning affair, Grossman knocked in the game-winning RBI to clinch the Cal win.

OREGON STATE (0-0, 10-10)Last Week: vs. Washington L, 9-5; L, 9-5; vs. Washington State L, 8-6; W, 4-0This Week: UCSB

Oregon State evened its overall record at 10-10, posting one win over Washington State last week ... The Beavers are amidst a six-game homestand, hosting UC Santa Barbara in a three-game series beginning Sat., March 22 ... On Sat., March 15, senior right-hander Stephen Copeland earned the win with a 4-0 shutout over the Cougars ... He pitched 6.0 innings, giving up three hits, zero runs, zero walks, while striking out two WSU batters ... Senior outfielder Chris Biles also had an outstanding performance last week batting .556 (5-for-9), with three doubles, one RBI and two runs ... He also tied an Oregon State record for doubles in a game with three versus WSU on Fri., March 14.

STANFORD (0-0, 14-7)Last Week: IdleThis Week: *Arizona State

The seventh-ranked Stanford Cardinal has been idle since Sun., March 9, the last day of a three-game, non-conference series against California ... Stanford is on a five-game winning streak and has defeated their opponents by an average of 7.8 runs in those contests ... They will go head-to-head with one of the hottest teams in baseball right now, the ASU Sun Devils ... Last year, Stanford won the series, claiming two of three games against Arizona State ... Freshman John Mayberry, Jr. extended his 14-game hitting streak with a two-RBI single on Sun., March 9 ... He has hit safely in 20 of his first 21 collegiate games ... Junior outfielder Carlos Quentin leads the team with a .378 batting average in 74 at bats, including seven doubles and one home run.

UCLA (0-0, 12-14)Last Week: vs. Pacific L, 8-4; vs. UC Riverside L, 8-4This Week: Wichita State

The UCLA Bruins are coming off of back-to-back mid-week losses to Pacific and UC Riverside by scores of 8-4 and 10-6, respectively ... The team will face the 29th-ranked Wichita State squad this weekend, according to Collegiate Baseball magazine ... In the game against Riverside, second baseman Preston Griffin set a new career-high with six RBI, driving in every Bruin run of the game ... Sophomore Matt Thayer is second on the team with a .354 batting average in 26 games played and 82 at bats ... He has also drove in 17 RBI and is seven of eight in stolen base attempts to lead the team.

USC (0-0, 11-11)Last Week: vs. Pepperdine W, 9-6; vs. Cal State Fullerton W, 3-2; L, 11-3This Week: San Diego, *Arizona

The Trojans head into Pac-10 play with an overall record of 11-11, following a split with Cal State Fullerton last weekend ... USC has been with out the services of ace pitchers Anthony Reyes and Brett Bannister, both nursing elbow injuries, along with a slew of other players on the pitching staff who are out for various reasons ... Bannister is expected to be back in early April, while Reyes remains day-to-day ... Freshman catcher Jeff Clement is proving that his record-breaking 75 home runs in high school were no fluke, as he has already amassed 11 home runs thus far to lead the team, along with a batting .291 through 22 games and knocking in 21 RBI ... His 11th homer came on Fri., March 14 in a 3-2 win over fifth-ranked CS Fullerton.

WASHINGTON (0-0, 14-6)Last Week: vs. Oregon State W, 9-5; W, 9-5; vs. Cal State Northridge W, 9-2; W, 11-0; W, 7-0This Week: UC Irvine

The Huskies are on a 10 game winning streak, their last loss dating back to Feb. 28 when they were defeated by San Diego, 5-0 ... This marks the third-longest single-season streak in Ken Knutson's tenure and the longest all-Division-I streak in Washington history ... All previous streaks have included games vs. non-Division I opposition ... UW posted 11-0 and 7-0 shutouts over CS Northridge last weekend, marking back-to-back shutouts for the first time since 1999 ... Washington out-scored CSUN 27-2 and out-hit the Matadors, 38-12, not allowing an extra-base hit until the ninth inning of the third game ... The Huskies also went the weekend without making an error and have played error-free in 12 of 20 games this season.

WASHINGTON STATE (0-0, 5-15)Last Week: vs. Oregon State W, 8-6; L, 4-0; vs. Portland W, 6-3This Week: Portland, *California

Washington State posted two wins last week over Oregon State and Portland by scores of 8-6 and 6-3, respectively ... The Cougars are on the road for the next eight games, including series with California and UC Irvine, along with a game against Gonzaga ... WSU's Nick Kenyon got the start against the Pilots on Mon., March 17 and worked six solid innings, picking up his first win of the year ... With the win over the Beavers on Fri., March 14, Washington State snapped a five-game losing streak ... Aaron MacKenzie picked up his first save on the year with four solid innings of work after starter Bryce Chamberlin came out after the fifth ... MacKenzie recorded seven strikeouts in that game.

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