USC salvages weekend with walk-off victory

first_imgUSC men’s baseball started a new era this weekend under interim head coach Dan Hubbs, and until the bottom of the ninth in the third game of the opening series, the Trojans were off to a rough start.Strong start · In his college debut, freshman pitcher Kyle Twomey gave up three earned runs in 6.1 innings with four strikeouts and just one walk. — Ralf Cheung | Daily TrojanUSC (1-2) faced three different teams in their opening weekend series, losing two games on the road against Cal State Fullerton and Bakersfield.But the Trojans returned to Dedeaux Field to face Nebraska (0-4) in what began as an old-fashioned pitcher’s duel and ended in a thrilling 4-3 walk-off victory in USC’s home opener on Sunday afternoon.“Sunday is that day where you either sweep the series, win the series or salvage the series,” Hubbs said. “I thought we did a great job of salvaging the weekend.”Freshman pitcher Kyle Twomey took the mound for the Trojans in his first collegiate start and held his own in a game dominated early by starting pitching. USC took an early 1-0 lead in the second inning that lasted until the sixth, when Twomey surrendered three runs in his only rocky inning of the day.As it did for most of the opening series, the Trojan offense looked like it was about to come up short. The team was unable to score in consecutive innings with runners in scoring position and frequently fell victim to elusive timely hitting.In the bottom of the ninth, trailing the Huskers 3-2, the Trojans pieced together its best, and most clutch, offensive effort of the game. Freshman right fielder Vahn Bozoian and junior third baseman Kevin Swick tacked together a pair of hits, forcing Nebraska to intentionally walk the bases loaded. Sophomore catcher Garrett Stubbs tied the game with a sacrifice fly.The team is no stranger to walk-offs and senior infielder Adam Landecker said he was confident stepping up to the plate in a high-pressure situation.“When we came in for the bottom of the ninth, we knew we were going to win,” Landecker said.He sent the team home with a two-out walk-off single and helped the team notch its first victory.The win over Nebraska had added importance following the two tough losses that preceded it. On Saturday, Bakersfield took advantage of an inconsistent and inexperienced pitching staff and topped the Trojans, 9-4.Three of the five Trojan pitchers stepped into new positions Saturday: Sophomore right-hander Wyatt Strahan made his first career start and freshmen right-handers Shane Gonzalez and Kyle Davis both made their collegiate debuts for the Trojans. USC sent five pitchers to the mound and the staff collectively allowed eight hits and walked 10 batters.Offensively, the team struggled with plate discipline, striking out 11 times and walking only once.The poor showing against Bakersfield followed a strong effort in the team’s season-opening loss to  No. 22 Cal State Fullerton, in which the Trojans again struggled to muster any consistent hitting.The Titans kept the Trojan bats quiet for all but two innings, starting off the game with 4.2 hitless innings and closing the game with three more. USC only reached base in the fifth and sixth innings, with its first base runner coming off a two-out single by Swick to break up a no-hitter in the fifth inning. USC’s only runs came off the bat of junior shortstop James Roberts, who launched a two-run home run to left field with two outs in the sixth inning.Junior left-hander Bob Wheatley, who pitched four scoreless innings after surrendering a run in the first frame, gave up two go-ahead runs in the bottom of the sixth.Friday’s loss marks the first time in five seasons that the Trojans have dropped an opening game.Hubbs said Sunday that he’s focused on working with his young team and building confidence in his players, and freshmen such as Twomey are hoping to improve enough to keep the team’s momentum going.“I hope I can continue to just go out and get good starts,” Twomey said. “As long as I can give us a chance to win every time, I’ll be content.”A win against Loyola Marymount today would even their 1-2 record and give them a chance to bounce back.“If we can hold our heads just above water until we really get in our groove, I think we’ll be in good shape,” Hubbs said.USC was scheduled to play Loyola Marymount on Tuesday night, but the game was postponed because of impending rain and will be played this evening at Dedeaux Field at 6:00 p.m.Freshman pitcher Brent Wheatley, brother of Friday night starter Bobby Wheatley, will start on the mound for the Trojans in his collegiate debut.last_img read more

Syracuse ice hockey rolls over Penn State, 4-1, for second straight day

first_imgFor the second straight day, Syracuse (7-10-5, 6-2-2 College Hockey America) dominated in the shot department, defeating Penn State (5-15-4, 4-5-1), 4-1, on Saturday at Tennity Ice Pavilion. On Friday, SU beat PSU, 3-1.On Saturday afternoon, Syracuse outshot and out-attempted the Nittany Lions 34-15 and 50-22, respectively, and rode a four-goal third period to a 4-1 victory. The Orange scored four goals for the first time since Nov. 11 at Mercyhurst.Following a scoreless first period, Penn State opened up the scoring 9:30 in the second period with Abby Welch’s first goal of the season. Abby is the sister of SU goalie Maddi Welch. From that moment on, Syracuse piled on shot after shot before finally striking moments into the final frame.Thirty-seven seconds into the third period, SU’s Allie Munroe scored what would be the first of three quick-strike goals for the Orange in a four minute, 52 second span. Less than two minutes later, Laurence Porlier scored. Munroe padded the lead 3:31 later for her second goal of the day.Syracuse continued to dictate the play for the remainder of the period and Brooke Avery scored an empty-net goal with 55 seconds remaining. Despite dominating Penn State in shots and shot attempts and on the scoreboard, Syracuse was dead even at 29 on faceoff wins and losses and took twice as many penalties (6-3).AdvertisementThis is placeholder textWith the win, Syracuse continues to gain ground in the CHA standings and remains in second place behind leader Robert Morris (14-2-5, 8-1-1). Syracuse next plays at Lindenwood (5-14-2, 3-6-1) on Friday in St. Charles, Missouri, to start a two-day weekend road trip. Comments Published on January 14, 2017 at 6:33 pm Contact Jake: jafalk@syr.edu Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more