Facing an elimination game on Friday morning from the 2018 West Coast Conference Championship Tournament in Stockton, Calif., LMU (25-29) won a 1-0 pitchers’ duel as senior Tyler Cohen and freshman Nick Frasso combined for 9.0 shutout frames to outduel sophomore Riley Ornido and Brendan Jenkins of San Francisco (28-30).
STELLAR PITCHING: Cohen tossed the first 6.0 innings, allowing just three hits and three walks while striking out four before turning the ball over to Frasso in a scoreless game. Frasso tossed the final 3.0 innings, allowing just one hit – the only baserunner allowed – in the ninth inning while striking out five. Ornido allowed a single run in the bottom of the seventh inning, putting him on the hook for his fifth loss of the year and handing Frasso his fourth victory. Ornido surrendered just five hits overall while walking four and striking out seven.
— LMU Athletics (@LMULions) May 25, 2018
HOW IT WAS WON: LMU broke a scoreless game with one run in the bottom of the seventh. Cooper Uhl led off with a single before moving to second on a wild pitch. After Kenny Oyama pulled a bunt back and slashed a single into left-centerfield, Billy Wilson drove in the game-winner with an RBI-groundout to second base on the ensuing play.
TOURNAMENT UPDATE: In game one of the WCC Championship Tournament, top-seed Pepperdine posted an 8-2 victory over fourth-seed San Francisco to move into the winner’s bracket. With LMU’s win over San Francisco, LMU survives to play the loser of Pepperdine and Gonzaga tonight with a spot in the Championship Round on the line.
BOX SCORE NOTES: LMU managed five hits to USF’s four … Wilson went 2-for-4 with a double, while Niko Pacheco also doubled.
LION NOTES: LMU has dropped seven of the last 12, 11 of the last 19, and 17 of the last 29 overall … Frasso has allowed just two runs and 15 hits with 41 strikeouts over 23.2 innings (.76 ERA) out of the bullpen this year, and has struck out 35 hitters over his last 20.1 innings ... the shutout win was LMU's fourth of the year.
FOURTH TIME IS THE CHARM: LMU is appearing in the WCC Championship Tournament for the fourth time in the six-year history of the event ... the Lions have reached the final twice (2014 & 2015), but have not been able to capture the Championship ... LMU's four appearances are tied for second-most among WCC members (BYU, Pepperdine) - trailing only Gonzaga who has appeared in all but one (2015), but has also never won ... eight of the 10 WCC teams have appeared in the tournament in its six years.
ON DECK: LMU will continue WCC Tournament play on Friday at 7:30 p.m. in an elimination game against the loser of Friday’s Pepperdine vs. Gonzaga game from Banner Island Ballpark.
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