Trojans Drop Close 6-5 Contest to Crosstown Rival No. 13 UCLA
March 9, 2014
LOS ANGELES - The USC baseball team could not hold on to a 2-0 lead, falling 6-5 to crosstown rivals No. 13 UCLA on Sunday afternoon at Dedeaux Field.
In front of a sellout crowd, the Trojans tallied five runs on nine hits, with center fielder Timmy Robinson (Huntington Beach, Calif./Ocean View HS) and third baseman Kevin Swick (La Canada, Calif./Loyola HS) leading the way with two hits apiece in the nonconference loss. Shortstop Blake Lacey (Clovis, Calif./Clovis HS) also had a day at the plate, driving in two of the Trojans five runs. Trojan starter Bob Wheatley (Villa Park, Calif./Orange Lutheran HS) had a strong start, holding the Bruins to just one unearned run on six hits through 6.2 innings of work. In the no-decision he struck out two while walking two.
The Trojans got to Bruin starter Cody Poteet in the sixth inning to jump out to a 2-0 lead. Garrett Stubbs (Del Mar, Calif./Torrey Pines HS) got on base to start the inning due to an error by the Bruins second baseman. Robinson delivered a sacrifice bunt to advance Stubbs to second and a double by Lacey scored Stubbs for the first run of the inning. Swick singled to right field to put runners on the corners with just one out. AJ Ramirez (Bakersfield, Calif./Bakersfield Christian HS) laid down the sacrifice bunt to plate Lacey from third and reached base himself due to an error by the first baseman to put the Trojans up 2-0.
In the top of the seventh the Bruins answered with four runs of their own on two hits, along with two Trojan fielding errors. With two outs, after Chris Keck reached second base on a two-base error by the Trojan shortstop, Wheatley was pulled in favor of sophomore reliever Kyle Davis (Garden Grove, Calif./Pacifica HS), and the
Bruins began their two-out rally, plating four runs to put the Trojans down 4-2.
In the bottom of the seventh the Trojans answered, as Bruin starter Poteet was pulled for reliever Max Schuh with one down and one on. Stubbs singled up the middle to put runners at second and first, one out. Schuh was then pulled for Bruin All-American reliever David Berg. A single by Robinson loaded the bases and the run scored from third on a fielder's choice by Lacey to put the Trojans down just one, 4-3.
The Bruins struck in the eighth with a solo home run by Keck to put the Trojans down again, 5-3.
In the eighth the Trojans added two more runs to tie things up, as pinch hitter Joe Corrigan (Santa Monica, Calif./Harvard-Westlake HS) drove in a run on a fielder's choice and the Trojans plated a second on an errant throw to first from the Bruins second baseman.
In the top of the ninth however, the Bruins scored a run off of Trojan reliever Nigel Nootbaar (El Segundo, Calif./El Segundo HS), as Christoph Bono delivered a two-out single.
In the bottom of the ninth the Trojans threatened, having runners at first and second, one out, but they were unable to mount a comeback, falling 6-5 to their rivals.
The Trojans will be back in action at Dedeaux Field on Tuesday, as they host Loyola Marymount at 6 p.m. in their final nonconference tune up before heading to Oregon to open Pac-12 play next weekend.