Cougars Travel To Gonzaga, Then Host No. 6 Arizona
April 5, 2005
THIS WEEK: Tuesday, April 5 - WSU vs. Gonzaga, 3 p.m., Avista Stadium, Spokane
*Friday, April 8 - WSU vs. No. 6 Arizona, 6 p.m., Bailey-Brayton Field, Pullman
*Saturday, April 9 - WSU vs. No. 6 Arizona, 3 p.m., Bailey-Brayton Field, Pullman
*Sunday, April 10 - WSU vs. No. 6 Arizona, Noon, Bailey-Brayton Field, Pullman
NEXT WEEK: Tuesday, April 12 - WSU vs. Gonzaga, 3 p.m., Avista Stadium, Spokane
WSU will NOT play a weekend series
LAST WEEK: Tuesday, March 29 -Gonzaga 14, WSU 12 (10 innings) 6 p.m., Bailey-Brayton Field, Pullman
*Friday, April 1 - No. 12 Stanford 14, WSU 5, Bailey-Brayton Field, Pullman
*Saturday, April 2 - No. 12 Stanford 11, WSU 4, Bailey-Brayton Field, Pullman
*Sunday, April 3 - No. 12 Stanford 8, WSU 6, Bailey-Brayton Field, Pullman
*Denotes Pacific-10 Conference Game
The Washington State Cougars will travel to Spokane to play the Gonzaga Bulldogs at 3 p.m. Tuesday before returning to Bailey-Bratyon Field for a three-game Pacific-10 Conference series against No. 6 Arizona.
WSU (15-17, 0-6 Pac-10) is 1-1 against the Zags (18-10) this season, losing to GU 14-12 in a 10-inning battle last Tuesday. The Cougs beat Gonzaga 9-0 in their opening game of the Banana Belt Tournament, which they won for the 20th time in school history.
Cougar moms will see some great baseball this weekend when the Wildcats (21-10, 5-1 Pac-10) travel to the Palouse for a conference series that coincides with WSU's Moms Weekend. Dane Renkert is slotted to throw the opening pitch of the series at 6 p.m. Friday for his first start of the season. Saturday's game will begin at 1 p.m. with the finale beginning at noon Sunday.
The Cougars are looking to end their seven-game losing streak that includes the series sweep last weekend by No. 12 Stanford (17-9, 3-0 Pac-10). The Cardinal beat WSU 14-5 Friday, 11-4 Saturday and scored two runs in the eighth inning Sunday for an 8-6 comeback victory.Freshman Jim Murphy remains at the top of the WSU batting average list after his .471 hitting performance in last week's games. His .392 overall batting average is sixth best among Pac-10 batters.
Five Cougar regulars are hitting above .300 for the season including Jay Miller, who is second on the team with a .368 batting average. He is followed by Brady Everett (.336), Kaeo Rubin (.328) and Zach McAngus (.325). Everett is currently on an 18-game hit streak.Against the Cardinal Miller hit at a .545 clip to lead the team, going 6-for-11, including a double and a pair of runs batted in.In his sixth start of the season against GU, Zach Franklin drove home five runs, going 3-for-6 with a double and a home run. The co-captain hit .455 last week, recording five of his 15 season hits and seven of his 10 runs batted in over the three-game span.
COACH MARBUT TALKS ABOUT COUGS: 'We are trying to get back on track and get healthy as a team; mentally and physically.Arizona is the best team in the Pac-10 and one of the best teams in the nation. They are going to be a really big challenge.'
Jim Murphy: The freshman leads Cougar regulars for the second-straight week, hitting .392 overall, ranking sixth among conference batters...riding 11-game hitting streak...Kirkland, Wash. native hit .471 last week, .357 against Stanford...went 3-for-3 last Tuesday against Zags, driving home three runs, including solo homer...had five hits in Cardinal series, recording two doubles, two runs and two RBI...since March 3 he's hit .433, recording 26 of his 31 hits, including all 12 of his extra base hits...in 2003 Jay Miller led WSU batters with a .341 average as a freshman...prior to Miller, the last time a freshman led the team in hitting at the end of the season was 1997, when redshirt freshman Steve Curran led with a .350 average...Murphy is second on the team with six long balls and tied for fourth with eight doubles...has 18 RBI for a team-leading .696 slugging percentage, which is the third best average among Pac-10 sluggers...leads team with 198 putouts, placing ninth on Pac-10 putout list.
Jay Miller: Led Coug regulars hitting .545 in Stanford series...went 6-for-11 with one double, while driving home two runs and scoring a pair...had 3-for-3 performance Sunday with two RBI and a run scored...second on team with .368 overall batting average...first on team with 46 hits and 13 multiple hit games...ranked seventh among Pac-10 hitters with .477 on base percentage...has 11 extra base hits, including eight doubles, a triple and two bombs...driven home 22 runs and scored 23...batting .352 for career, leading team last two seasons in hitting...started every game this season and 137 of 142 games in career.Brady Everett: Currently on a 18-game hitting streak, which is a team-best...leads Cougs with 39 RBI, 31 runs scored and eight long balls...ranked on several Pac-10 hitting lists, including runs scored (7th), RBI (t-2nd), home runs (4th) and hit by pitch (2nd with 13)...the catcher is third on the team with a .336 batting average, recording 38 hits including six doubles...hit .333 last week, recording five hits, including two doubles and a three-run home run.
Jason Freeman: Found hot bat when conference play started last season, on pace to do the same this year...third on the team with a .346 batting average during Pac-10 games...hit .333 against Stanford, recording five hits, two runs and three RBI...hit .364 in California series with four hits...has 34 hits this season including six doubles...leads team and is tied for third in Pac-10 with 11 stolen bases.
Jimmy Freeman: Leads Pac-10 with 10 starts and is tied for first with six wins...pitched 51 innings for WSU to lead the team and place ninth on the conference innings pitched list...posting a 4.06 ERA, allowing 25 runs, 23 earned...tied for eighth among conference hurlers with 48 strike outs, which leads WSU...holds opponents to a .245 batting average, allowing 47 hits.
Dane Renkert: Leads team and is ranked second in Pac-10 with 16 relief appearances...is 1-1 this spring with two saves...the senior is slotted to make his first start of the season and second of his career Friday...inherited eight runners in relief this season, allowing two to score...posts 4.98 ERA over 34.1 innings of work, allowing 41 hits and 26 runs, 19 earned.
Zach Kosturos: Leads team with 14 extra base hits...among Pac-10 hitters is tied for sixth with 10 doubles and tied for third with three triples.
AGAINST THE ZAGS: WSU is 1-1 against Gonzaga this season...Jimmy Freeman and Dustin Willis combined to shutout the Bulldogs, 9-0 March 3 in the first game of the Banana Belt Tournament...WSU fell to the Zags 14-12 Tuesday, March 29 in 10-innings...the Cougars lead the all-time series against Gonzaga 169-83-1...the series between the two teams dates back to 1911...the Zags and Cougs tied the 2004 series 2-2...WSU and Gonzaga will face off two more times this season; April 12 at Spokane and April 19 at Bailey-Brayton Field...Gonzaga currently has a record of 18-10 and 3-2 when playing at Avista Stadium.
AGAINST THE WILDCATS: WSU and Arizona will face off for the first time this season...last spring, the 'Cats took two of three games against WSU at Tucson...the Wildcats won games one and three in the three-game series...all-time the Cats lead the series 17-9, dating back to 1974...Arizona playing its third consecutive weekend of conference action...the Wildcats are 5-1 in Pac-10 play...last week Arizona completed a three-game sweep of UCLA at Los Angeles ...the Cats are now 21-10...Arizona will take on the Tucson Sidewinders, the Arizona Diamonds AAA affiliate, in an exhibition game Tuesday at 6 p.m.
MOM'S WEEKEND WITH THE COUGS: This weekend marks the annual WSU Mom's Weekend...April 17, 2004, the Saturday game of Mom's Weekend, the WSU-USC game drew 3,153 fans...the attendance was the largest Cougar home crowd since 1989...WSU's largest crowd was 4,666 in 1990 for a doubleheader against Washington.
STREAKING EVERETT: Senior catcher Brady Everett is looking to continue his current 18-game hit streak this week against Gonzaga and Arizona...the transfer from Clemson began his current hit streak with a pair of hits March 3 against Gonzaga at the Banana Belt Tournament...during the streak Everett has maintained a .377 batting average (23-for-61) with an on-base percentage of .500...there have only been two games this season Everett has been hitless; Feb. 11 at Southeastern Louisiana and Feb. 27 at Hawai'i...in the first game of a doubleheader Feb. 19, Everett played but did not have an official at-bat ...Everett now holds the record for consecutives games with a hit by a catcher...prior to Everett, catcher Jon Baeder had a 11 game streak in 2001...the school record for most consecutive hits in a game belongs to Shawn Stevenson...Stevenson ended the 1997 season with hits in his last 18 games, then hit safely in the first 10 games of the 1998 season...prior to Stevenson, John Olerud held the record with a mark of 22 games during the 1988 season, in which he was voted Baseball America's player of the year.
RELIEVERS HOLDING ON: This season, there has been a total of 63 runners on base when Cougar relief pitchers have entered a game...the bullpen has allowed 28 of those runners to score...with runners on base, the most effective reliever has been Jayson Miller...Miller's only allowed two of 10 inherited runners to score...Dane Renkert has allowed two of eight runners to score, while Steve Kost has allowed three of eight inherited runners to cross home plate...Dustin Willis has allowed four of nine inherited runners on base to score and Eric Dingwall's given up one run with four runners already on base.
BRUISED BATTERS: WSU leads the Pac-10 with 61 batters hit by pitches...Washington is second with 40 hit batters...in the conference individual hit by pitch category, there are five Cougars on the top-10 list...Brady Everett is second, being hit 13 times, Kaeo Rubin and Jay Miller are tied for third with 10 HBP's...Zach McAngus has been hit eight times and Zach Kosturos is tied for sixth on the list, being hit in seven at-bats...11-of-15 Cougs have been hit by a pitch at least once this year...ouch!
FREEMAN IN GOOD COMPANY: Prior to earning his first lost in the series opener against California, Jimmy Freeman started the season 6-0...five WSU pitchers have started the season with a 6-0 record since 1988, including John Olerud, Aaron Sele, Bryce Chamberlin, Ed Gustafson, and David Wainhouse...last year Chamberlin started 6-0, finishing 8-3 overall...Sele started 7-0 in 1990 and finished 12-3...Gustafson went 8-0 in 1989, recording a 8-2 overall record...Olerud went 15-0 in 1998, while Wainhouse finished 7-0 the same year.
BATTLE FOR THE BATTING TITLE: The Cougar regular with the best overall batting average the Monday after a weekend series has changed five times this season...Jim Murphy leads the team with a .392 batting average...took over the lead after hitting .385 against California and then hit .471 last week to stay on top...prior to Murphy, Zach McAngus and Jay Miller battled back and forth for the lead...McAngus is edging out Miller, leading the team for four weeks to Miller's three...Miller led WSU after its first weekend of play, boasting his highest average of the year, .429...McAngus took the lead the following weekend, hitting .500, which is the highest batting average of any regular this spring...Murphy batted .419 over the past four series of play to take the lead...when McAngus has led he's hit .415 (2/21/05), .364 (3/07/05 and 3/14/05)...Miller led with .404 (2/28/05) and .376 (3/21/05) averages...Jay Miller is currently second among Coug regulars with a .368 batting average...Brady Everett is third hitting .336, Kaeo Rubin is fourth (.328) and McAngus is fifth with a .325 batting average.
GOING THE DISTANCE: Brady Everett leads the Cougars with eight home runs...freshman Jim Murphy is second on the team with six...Everett hit his eighth homer of the season during Tuesday's loss to Gonzaga...Everett's three-run shot was his sixth multiple-run home run this season...nine Cougars have gone yard this season, including Jay Miller, who has two home runs...Zach Franklin, Kaeo Rubin, Zach McAngus, Matt Thomas, Zach Kosturos and Jeff Miller each have each gone yard once this year.
PAC-10 PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Bellevue, Wash. native, Jay Miller was named the Pacific-10 Conference Player of the Week for the week of March 15-21 for his .688 hitting performance against Utah Valley State...went 11-for-16 against the Wolverines, including three doubles, a triple and a homer...scored six runs, while driving home as many and stole base three times...with his performance he improved his overall batting average from .318 to .376, which led the team last week...he is the first Cougar to receive the weekly honor this season.
PAC-10 TEAMS RANK AMONG BEST: Five of WSU's conference opponents are nationally ranked in either the Collegiate Baseball Newspaper or the Baseball America polls...Arizona is the top-ranked Pac-10 school, finishing 6th on the Baseball America list and 11th on the Collegiate Baseball Newspaper poll...Stanford is No. 10 and No. 12, respectively on the Baseball America and Collegiate Baseball Newspaper polls... Baseball America ranks Oregon State 16th and ASU 24th...OSU moved up 12 spots to No. 15 in the Collegiate Baseball Newspaper, while Arizona State finished 29th on the poll and USC re-entered the list at the 29th spot.
RUBIN SETS AND TIES WSU RECORDS: During the course of the Banana Belt Tournament and the following series against Northern Colorado Rubin set a school record with hits in nine consecutive trips to the plate...tied a school record set in 1992 with hits in 10 consecutive at bats, not counting walks...the record was originally set by current Cleveland Indian Mike Kinkade...went 6-for-6 March 11, tying a school record for hits in a game set in 1907...Rubin used hits over three-game span to set and tie school records...had two hits sandwiched around a walk March 6...hit in first two plate appearances, going 3-for-4 March 12 against Northern Colorado...had 11 hits with three doubles and five RBI in the three-game span.
WSU ALL-TIME BANANA BELT CHAMPS: Since the Banana Belt Tournament started in 1950 WSU has won the title 20 times, including the last two...host LCSC has captured the tournament title 19 times...the last time WSU won the Banana Belt Tournament in consecutive years was 1979 and 1980...the longest WSU streak for consecutive Banana Belt titles is four years, 1963 through 1966...WSU has placed second 11 times...and won titles in 1950, 1951, 1961, 1963-66, 1969-71, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1979-80, 1982, 1988, 1990, 2004 and 2005.
ON THE ROAD AGAIN: During the first five weeks of the 2005 season, the Cougars played 18 games in five different states...WSU started the season in Sacramento, Calif., going 1-2 against Sac State...WSU then went 2-1 against Southeastern Louisiana in Hammond...played in Pasco, splitting the series 2-2 against Portland...then traveled to Hawai'i, splitting the four-game series...finished in Lewiston, Idaho, taking the Banana Belt Tournament championship with a 3-1 record...in the first five weeks the Cougars traveled roughly 16,000 miles round trip.
EXTRA INNINGS FIRST SINCE 1975: The 10-inning opening game of the 2005 WSU baseball season against Sacramento State Friday, February 4, was the first time since 1975 a Cougar team has played extra innings in its first outing of the season...the Cougars lost 7-6 to LCSC at the start of the 1975 season.
IMPROVEMENT EARNS NATIONAL RANKING: Between the 2003 and 2004 seasons, the Cougars were the 15th most improved team in the nation...in 2003 WSU finished the season with an 19-37 overall record...in 2004 it finished the season 29-26...the Cougars improved 10.5 games in 2004...the most improved team in the nation following the 2004 season was Prairie View, which improved its final record by 19.5 games.
TOUGH SCHEDULE: The Cougars will face six teams that played in the post-season last year...five conference foes, Arizona, Arizona State, Stanford, UCLA and Washington, all made a regional appearance, with the Wildcats making it to the College World Series...Lewis-Clark State made it to the NAIA World Series.
COUGS HIT FIELD EARLY: In past years Washington State was limited in early-season outdoor practice time, but with WSU's new FieldTurf baseball diamond, Cougar players have been enjoying mild weather while holding intrasquad games and practices outdoors since the middle of January. 'We have been on our new field every day since January 19,' says Donnie Marbut.
THE WASHINGTON CONNECTION: The 2005 Washington State team consists of 31 Washington natives including head coach Donnie Marbut and associate coach Travis Jewett...four Cougar players hail from Bellevue...Kennewick, Woodinville and Spokane are each home to a pair of players...other Washington cities that made the Cougar geographic roster are Beaver, Bellingham, Burien, Des Moines, Enumclaw, Federal Way, Issaquah, Longview, Moses Lake, Olympia, Renton, Richland, Sammamish, Spanaway, Tacoma, Vancouver and Walla Walla...Marbut is a Aberdeen native and Jewett calls Tacoma home.2005 CAPTAINS: The 2005 Washington State baseball captains are senior Dane Renkert and redshirt juniors Zach Kosturos and Zach Franklin.
THE EDMONDS CC CONNECTION: Four current Cougars played for WSU Head Coach Donnie Marbut during his tenure as head coach at Edmonds Community College...former Tritons new to the squad this year are Eric Dingwall and Brady Everett...Kaeo Rubin and Zach Kosturos both played under Marbut at Edmonds before coming to WSU last season...all four players won a NWAACC Championship under Marbut.
NO GAPS IN COUGAR OUTFIELD: Starting in the Washington State outfield are junior Jay Miller and seniors Jason Freeman and Kaeo Rubin...the three led the team in hitting last season with Miller edging out Freeman for first, .355 to .344...Rubin was third with a .341 batting average...all three earned Pac-10 honorable mention accolades...Miller also earned all-academic honorable mention kudos...Freeman played second base last season but this season has returned to his natural position in the outfield.
AN ALL NEW PLAYING FIELD: WSU is one of the few colleges in the nation to play on an artificial surface baseball field...in 2004 the Cougars became the first NCAA Division I team to have FieldTurf as its playing surface...WSU joined the Tampa Bay Devil Rays and the Minnesota Twins as part of the exclusive group of baseball teams to use FieldTurf as their playing field...the Cougar baseball diamond is ringed with a brownish red warning track and includes base paths of the same color...the only dirt on WSU's baseball field is the pitching mound and around home plate...included in the renovation project completed before the 2004 season were new dugouts for both teams.
MARBUT IN GOOD COMPANY: Don Marbut is the ninth WSU head coach to win his first baseball game as a Cougar and the first since Bobo Brayton beat Gonzaga 9-4 March 22, 1962, beginning his illustrious 33-year WSU career...Marbut beat Sacramento State 8-7 to open his WSU career...the eight other WSU head coaches who won their first games are Jack Friel (1943), Arthur 'Buck' Bailey (1927), Harry Applequist (1923), Frank Barber (1921), J.R. Bender (1907), Everett Sweeley (1905) and J.N. Ashmore (1904).