USC Rallies For Series Win Over No. 19 OSU
April 29, 2012
LOS ANGELES --The USC baseball team scored four runs in the second inning to rebound from an early two-run deficit en route to a 6-2 series clinching win over No. 19 Oregon State this afternoon at Dedeaux Field. Freshman Stephen Tarpley notched his fifth win of the season with an impressive 7 1/3 inning outing against a potent OSU offense.
"This was a big win for our team," said head coach Frank Cruz. "We have had some hard times this season, but we came out ready to battle this weekend. Tarpley was a prime example of that today. He bounced back after a tough first inning and pitched like the fierce competitor he is. I'm happy with how our guys approached this series and I think it does a lot for us going forward."
OSU (28-14 overall, 8-10 Pac-12) opened the game with a bang as Ryan Barnes and Tyler Smith put up back-to-back doubles to lead off the first and take a 1-0 lead. Ryan Gorton added an RBI single to center to score Barnes as the Beavers snatched a quick 2-0 lead on Tarpley.
With a runner in scoring position and two out in the second, second baseman Andres Rodriguez ranged 125 feet to make a fantastic sliding basket-catch as Barnes fouled-out down the right field line.
James Roberts (3-for-5) opened the bottom of the second with a single to center off Dan Child (L 4-3) to extend his hitting-streak to 17 games. USC (22-17 overall, 7-10 Pac-12) would then cut the lead in half as Kevin Roundtree (3 RBI) brought Roberts in from third on a groundout to second. Later in the inning, Rodriguez chipped in with the bat as he singled through the left side to score Matt Foat and tie the game at 2-2. With Foat on third and Alex Sherrod on second, Adam Landecker (2-for-3, 2 RBI) delivered a timely bases clearing single up the middle to cap USC's four-run inning.
"Rodriguez has been welcome addition to our program," said Cruz. "He's a real spark plug for our team and brings a lot to our club on the field and in the locker room. He's been great for us."
Roundtree delivered again knocking in Roberts from second as the Trojans strung together three singles in their half of the third to jump ahead 5-2.
With two on in the fifth, Tarpley fanned Dunn to work out of the jam and end the inning. He would strike out Dylan Davis to end the sixth as well. Aside from the first inning, Tarpley was stellar throwing 6 1/3 scoreless frames while striking out five.
"I was sweating a bit in that first inning," said Tarpley. "I just went in and re-grouped and was able to settle into my game. Having the confidence of the coaches helped a lot and the team rallied behind me today. We are coming together really well as a group and it feels good to get a big win like this."
Roberts kept the Trojans rolling as he doubled to right center in the seventh and advanced to third on a groundout to first by Foat. Roundtree stepped to the plate and laid down a perfect squeeze-bunt to score Roberts and provide USC with an insurance run.
Freshman Wyatt Strahan came on to close out the game for the Trojans working 1 2/3 scoreless innings.
Foat picked up his team-leading 18th multi-hit game while Landecker notched his 17th of the season. Roundtree tied Foat for the team-lead with his sixth multi-RBI game.
USC returns to action on Tuesday as they travel to Cal State Fullerton for a 6 p.m. non-conference matchup.