USC Shocks No. 13 California, 10-5|
April 1, 2011
BERKELEY, Calif. - Junior All-America first baseman Ricky Oropesa belted two home runs and tied his career best with five RBI Friday as the USC Trojans shocked the No. 13 California Golden Bears with a 10-5 win in the opening game of a Pac-10 Conference series. USC snapped Cal's seven-game winning streak as well as a four-game win streak in the series after the Golden Bears swept the Trojans last season at Dedeaux Field.
Oropesa recorded five RBI for the fourth time in his career. USC (10-16, 2-2) held a 5-0 lead before California (17-6, 3-1) rallied with five runs in the fifth before the Trojans scored at least one run in the final four innings.
Adam Landecker had three RBI for the Trojans as five USC pitchers combined to throw 4 2/3 scoreless innings in relief. The Trojans scored a season-high 10 runs off a Golden Bear pitching staff that entered today's game with a 1.84 staff ERA. Cal starter Erik Johnson, who came in with a 4-1 record and a 1.06 ERA, had given up just four runs this season before being touched up with five runs in five innings.
Oropesa got things started in the first with a line drive, two-run shot to right in the first. Landecker used a safety squeeze to plate Joe De Pinto in the third for the 3-0 USC lead. After Johnson hit James Roberts with a pitch in the fifth, Oropesa blasted another two-run homer to right center for his fourth of the season and the five-run advantage.
Andrew Triggs, who threw four scoreless innings and allowed just two hits, could not get out of the fifth inning as the Golden Bears compiled five runs on six hits. Devon Rodriguez capped the rally with an RBI single to right. With runners at the corners and two outs in the sixth, the Trojans regained the lead for good after Oropesa singled to right.
Cal had an opportunity in the bottom of the sixth after Tony Renda was intentionally walked to load the bases with two outs. With a full count against cleanup hitter Chadd Krist, USC reliever Chris Mezger threw an inside fast ball for the called strike three. Mezger gave way to Kyle Richter, who got Rodriguez to fly out to center for the final out to strand the bases loaded.
The series continues tomorrow with a 1 p.m. start and 1 p.m. game time for Sunday's series finale. Both games will be broadcast, along with Gametracker live stats, on usctrojans.com.
Notes: After going the first 21 games without a home run this season, Ricky Oropesa has four home runs in his last five games...Oropesa recorded his fourth career multi-home run game...Adam Landecker tied his career best of three RBI in a game, the second time he has had three RBI in a game...USC's previous season high for runs was nine, set twice (March 16 vs. Louisville and March 19 vs. Pacific in the first game of a doubleheader)...USC is now 3-8 this season against ranked opponents.
USC 201-021-121---10-13-1 CAL 000-050-001---6-11-0