Baseball Topples UCLA Again
Feb. 28, 1998
LOS ANGELES - USC held on for a 10-9 victory over UCLA on Saturday afternoon at Jackie Robinson Stadium. UCLA rallied in the ninth inning and scored two runs.
The Bruins had the tying run on third base and the winning run at first base, but senior Jack Krawczyk struck out pinch-hitter Eric Reece to end the game, earning his sixth save of the season and the 32nd of his career to become the Pac-10's all-time career saves leader. The old record was held by Brett Merrick (Washington, 1993-1996).
USC had stormed out to an 8-2 lead after three and a half innings. UCLA scored five unanswered runs with two in the fourth, two in the fifth and one in the sixth. In the fifth inning, senior Brett Nista and junior Eric Valent hit back-to-back home runs.
The score was 8-7 in favor of USC entering the seventh inning. Junior Jason Lane hit a two-run home run to give USC a 10-7 lead. Lane pitched three strong innings in relief and allowed just one run to earn the victory, improving to 2-0 on the season. Freshman Chad Cislak suffered the loss for UCLA. He allowed eight runs (five earned) in five innings and dropped to 2-3 on the season.
In the ninth inning, Nista singled. After Krawczyk retired Valent and senior Eric Byrnes, freshman Garrett Atkins reached base safely on an error by senior third baseman Morgan Ensberg. Freshman Chase Utley and senior Cassidy Olson followed with RBI-singles. Reece, a redhsirt freshman, who had just one collegiate at bat before the game, was called on to pinch hit for freshman Nick Lyon who was 0-2 with two strikeouts. Reece swung and missed at a 2-2 pitch to end the game.
Ensberg and freshman Seth Davidson had three hits apiece for USC. Nista led UCLA with four hits.
USC 023 300 300 10 18 2 UCLA 110 221 002 9 15 5 USC: Penny, Weibling (5), Lane (6), Krawczyk (9) and Munson UCLA: Cislak, Carter (6) and Green W: Jason Lane (2-0) L: Chad Cislak (2-3) HR: USC Ensenerg (4), a three-run shot in the third; Lane (4), a two-run shot in the seventh UCLA Nista (3), a solo shot in the fifith; Valent (6), a solo shot in the fifth Records: USC: 12-3, 4-1 UCLA: 7-10, 2-5