Lions Earn Berth Into WCC Championship
LMU earned at least a spot in the WCC Championship tournament with a 2-1 victory on Saturday.
May 17, 2014
STOCKTON, Calif. - The LMU baseball team (30-21, 17-9 WCC) earned a spot in the 2014 West Coast Conference Championship tournament by way of a 2-1 victory over Pacific (25-26, 14-12 WCC) on Saturday at Pacific's Klein Family Field. Senior Bret Dahlson achieved a personal milestone in the victory, retiring the side in the ninth to record his 10th save of the year and his 28th of his career - moving him into a tie for the West Coast Conference career record originally shared by Steve Kleen (Pepperdine, 2002-05) and AJ Griffin (San Diego, 2007-10).
Junior David Edwards delivered the game-winner in the top of the ninth inning, shooting a 2-2 pitch into right centerfield to bring home Cole Trezek and break a 1-1 tie. Trezek had led off the ninth with a double into right centerfield off of Pacific starter Jake Jenkins. The sophomore was impressive in the loss, going 8.1 innings and allowing just two runs on nine hits with four strikeouts. LMU's only other run off of Jenkins came on a leadoff home run from designated hitter Jimmy Jack. The round-tripper was Jack's team-leading fourth of the year.
LMU received a strong start of its own from senior Patrick McGrath. The senior right-hander surrendered just one run over 5.2 innings, allowing three hits and striking out four. He cruised through the bulk of his outing, retiring 14 straight after allowing a one-out single to Taylor Murphy in the first inning. The string was snapped on a leadoff single from JJ Wagner in the sixth, as Pacific eventually scored its only run in the frame. Jimmy Gosano bunted into a fielder's choice for the first out on the ensuing play, but a sacrifice bunt and a two-out RBI-single from Taylor Murphy plated the equalizer and handed McGrath the no-decision.
Junior Sean Buckle took over for LMU with two out in the sixth after Pacific got even, tossing the next 2.1 scoreless innings to earn the victory and improve to 2-4 on the year.
LMU will look to sweep the series over Pacific tomorrow at 1 pm. An LMU sweep and a Pepperdine series loss to Gonzaga (Gonzaga leads the three-game series 1-0 with game two on Saturday at 6 pm), would crown LMU the regular season WCC Champions and tab the Lions as the #1 overall seed headed into next week's WCC Championship tournament.