No. 24 UCLA Records 8-4 Win Over USC In Pac-10 Opener|
March 25, 2011
LOS ANGELES - Steve Rodriguez hit a bases-loaded double in a key four-run fourth inning Friday as the No. 24 UCLA Bruins defeated the USC Trojans, 8-4, in the Pac-10 Conference opener for both teams at Dedeaux Field. UCLA starter Gerrit Cole picked up the win with 6 2/3 innings, allowing four runs on seven hits with three walks and seven strikeouts.
UCLA improved to 10-7 overall while USC fell to 8-14.
Trojan All-America first baseman Ricky Oropesa had another good night at the plate with a 3-for-5 performance, hitting his first home run of the season to go with two RBI. Andrew Triggs (2-2) gave up four runs in 4 2/3 innings in the start for the Trojans, allowing five hits with two walks and five strikeouts.
Freshman shortstop James Roberts, who went 2-for-4 with two RBI, belted his first collegiate homer off Cole in the first inning. Oropesa singled home Kevin Roundtree in the third for a 2-0 lead in favor of the Trojans.
Tyler Rahmatulla led off the UCLA fourth with a double to right. After Cody Keefer hit a ground ball to the right side to move Rahmatulla to third, Dean Espy singled to left for the Bruins' first run. Cody Regis followed with a single and Jeff Gelalich was hit by a pitch to load the bases. Triggs struck out Pat Valaika for the second out, but Rodriguez hit the double to left field as UCLA took the 4-2 lead.
Oropesa smoked the two-out pitch from Cole over the fence in right center in the fifth inning, cutting the deficit to one. The Bruins, however, took advantage of Trojan pitching in the sixth as Kyle Richter and Brad Douthit combined to walk four straight batters as part of a three-run inning. USC was able to put runners at first and second in the ninth with two outs, but Nick Vander Tuig got Oropesa to fly out to center to end the game.
The series continues tomorrow night at 6 p.m. with the series finale on Sunday at 1 p.m. Both games will be broadcast through a live video webcast, along with Gametracker live stats, on usctrojans.com.
Notes: With his home run tonight, Ricky Oropesa is now tied for sixth all-time with 34 career home runs (Jason Lane, 1998-99)...Oropesa is batting .591 (13-for-22) in his last six games and has a .372 average on the season...freshman James Guillen made his collegiate debut, throwing a scoreless inning in the ninth.
UCLA 000-403-100---8-7-2 USC 101-010-100---4-8-2