USC Takes Pac-10 Series With 11-5 Win Over No. 5 Cal
April 12, 2008
LOS ANGELES - Sophomore shortstop Grant Green (Anaheim Hills/Canyon HS) went 4-for-4 with a triple while sophomore Brad Boxberger (Tustin/Foothill HS) allowed three runs in eight innings Saturday as the USC Trojans beat the No. 5 California Golden Bears for the second straight game, 11-5. USC won its third Pac-10 Conference series of the season against a Top 25 opponent (No. 2 Arizona and No. 23 UCLA).
The Trojans (18-15, 6-5) have won seven of their last eight games with six of the wins coming against Top 25 opponents.
Green and Boxberger, who were freshman All-Americans last season, enjoyed a solid outing. Boxberger allowed just five hits with two walks and seven strikeouts while Green collected his second four-hit game in his past five games.
USC jumped on Cal starter Craig Bennigson (3-1) early in the first inning. Nick Buss led off with a double to center, moving to third on a wild pitch. After Green walked, Derek Perren hit an RBI groundout to first. Roberto Lopez then walked before Hector Rabago was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Anthony Vasquez then hit a two-run single through the right side for a 3-0 Trojan lead.
Cal (22-9-2, 4-3) answered with two in the second. After Brett Jackson's leadoff single, Jeff Kobernus raked an RBI triple to right center and later scored on Dylan Tonneson's sacrifice fly. Both teams added a run each with the Trojans getting two more runs in the fourth to lead, 6-3.
In a pivotal sixth inning, USC got to Cal reliever Kevin Miller, who before the game had not allowed an earned run in 38 2/3 innings. Green hit a one-out triple and Miller walked Perren and Lopez back-to-back to load the bases. Senior designated hitter Mike Roskopf, who struck out twice in the game, then unloaded his second grand slam of the season to right center. Miller finished the game by giving up four runs in three innings.
The series concludes tomorrow with a 1 p.m. game at Dedeaux Field. The game will be broadcast live on usctrojans.com by video webcast, courtesy of TrojanTV All-Access.
Notes: USC is now third in the Pac-10 Conference with a 6-5 record behind leaders Arizona State and Stanford (both at 5-3)...Grant Green has an eight-game hitting streak where he is batting .606 (20-for-30) with three doubles, two home runs and 10 RBI...Green is batting .750 (15-for-20) in his last five games and is batting .387 on the season...Green's triple was the 12th in his career, one away from the school career mark of 13 held by Mark Smith and Seth Davidson...Saturday was the seventh straight game where the USC starting pitcher has thrown six or more innings.
CAL 020-100-002---5-7-1USC 310-204-10x---11-12-1
WP - Boxberger (2-1) LP - Bennigson (3-1)T - 2:50 ATT - 545Records: CAL (22-9-2, 4-3), USC (18-15, 6-5)
Bennigson, Miller (4), Fitzgerald (7) and Tonneson.Boxberger, Mezger (9), Hershiser (9) and Stock, Salinas (8).