THIS WEEK: LMU will continue a busy week of play this week, traveling to Hawai'i for four games starting on Thursday ... the first three games will be played at 9:35 pm. PT, with the finale set for 4:05 p.m. PT ... live links to follow the action can be found at LMULions.com.
GAME NOTES: LMU Baseball Notes
LMU: Started the season 0-4 for the first time since starting 0-6 in 2010 ... is 17-for-18 in stolen bases, and started the year 11-for-11 ... has had its last six games decided by two runs or less (four one-run games) ... is 1-5 over those six, with two of the three home losses coming by a run ... LMU is also 0-4 in one-run games this season ... the other home loss was decided by two runs, but was curfew-shortened 8 inning game ... played consecutive extra-inning affairs on 2/18 and 2/20 for the first time since playing 10 and 9 (scheduled for 7) at UCSB and at Texas on March 4 and March 11, 2012 ... last played consecutive 10+-inning extra-inning affairs on April 30 and May 1, 2011 at San Francisco ... has played for the WCC Championship three of the last four years (losses to Pepperdine in 2014 and 2015, loss to BYU in 2017) ... last earned an NCAA berth in 2000 ... is picked to finish fifth in the WCC Preseason Coaches’ Poll ... is also picked fifth according to D1Baseball.com.
LION TRACKS: With the game tied at 2-2 in the bottom of the eighth, USC's Chase Bushor launched his first homer of the year out to left field to hand USC a 3-2 victory over LMU on Tuesday night from USC's Dedeaux Field ... freshman Josh Robins was charged with the loss after allowing the go-ahead homer to Bushor in the eighth ... the right-hander tossed the final 1.1 innings, allowing just two hits, before falling to 0-1 ... Brad Wegman, who surrendered the game-tying RBI-single to Jamey Smart in the seventh inning, was credited with the loss after tossing 1.2 innings and striking out a pair ... the victory moved Wegman to 1-0 on the year ... Connor Lunn entered in the ninth inning and struck out the side to seal the victory and convert his fourth save of the year ... Nick Sogard went 2-for-3 with a run scored, a RBI, two walks and the three stolen bases for LMU ... the native of Sacramento, Calif. had a RBI-single in the third inning to draw the Lions back even at 1-1 to that point in the game.
BORN TO RUN: LMU stole a season-best five bases on Tuesday night, improving the team total to 17 stolen bases in 18 attempts ... Nick Sogard led the way with three stolen bases, while Billy Wilson and Kenny Oyama both stole one ... the Lions began the year 11-for-11 in stolen bases.
A WHOLE NEW STAFF: LMU returns just 154.2 innings from last year’s pitching staff that logged a combined 502.1 (31%) ... in addition, 12 of those returning innings came from players who are not expected to pitch in 2018 (Steven Chavez and Niko Decolati) ... LMU’s staff also returns only nine of its 56 starts from a year ago, with all nine coming outside of a traditional three-game weekend series.
AND IT'S A YOUNG STAFF: LMU has used 11 pitchers this year, but only one has been an upperclassman - junior Codie Paiva ... the Lions have used Paiva, seven true freshmen, a redshirt-freshman, one true sophomore, and a redshirt-sophomore ... 46.1 of LMU's 71.1 innings have come from freshmen arms (65%).
BREAKOUT GAME?: LMU managed 12 total bases and 2 RBI over the first two games of the year combined, but exploded for 25 total bases and 9 RBI at UNLV on 2/18 ... the Lions posted 2 doubles, 2 triples and 2 homers in the game ... over the next five games, LMU scored 27 runs on 43 hits, including nine doubles, two triples and four homers while managing 21 RBI.
THERE'S NO PLACE LIKE HOME: In its 36th season as the home of Lion baseball in 2018, George C. Page Stadium is also in its fifth year under the lights ... the 2018 LMU baseball schedule features 24 home games ... LMU, which is 1-3 so far this year, went 17-10 last year at home after going 9-12 at home in 2016 ... the Lions, who have posted a 561-423-4 (.570) overall record in the park's 35+ seasons, have claimed six conference titles while calling Page Stadium home ... the first Page Stadium conference title came in 1986, when the Lions posted a 24-8 record at home ... the best record came in 1988, when LMU was 30-5 at home (.857) ... LMU's historic first game in Page Stadium was played on March 19, 1983, with a 5-1 loss to Cal State Fullerton ... one of the staples of the venue, the Mikos Blue Monster in left field stands 130-feet wide and 37-feet tall.
STRONG STARTS AS OF LATE: LMU's starting pitchers have been strong over the last five turns, with the weekend trio of Josh Agnew, Nick Frasso and Matt Voelker combining to post a 0.48 ERA (1 ER in 18.2 IP) while allowing just 11 hits and striking out 19 in a three-game series against Oregon ... that trio, combined with two midweek starts from Holden Christian, has accumulated a 1.14 ERA (3 ER in 23.2 IP) with 24 strikeouts over the last five games.
BULLPEN STRUGGLES AS OF LATE: While LMU starters have impressed in the last five turns, the bullpen had consecutive tough outings while trying to hold LMU leads in the final two games of the Oregon series ... the Lions led 1-0 headed into the eighth on Saturday vs. Oregon, but the bullpen surrendered a run in the eighth and the go-ahead in the ninth as LMU fell, 2-1 ... LMU then carried a 4-0 advantage into the sixth on Sunday, but Oregon got to the bullpen for four in the sixth, four in the seventh and one in the eighth to capture the series by way of a 9-7 come-from-behind triumph ... LMU's 'pen posted a 19.50 ERA (11 ER in 5 IP) over the those final two games ... six different relievers appeared over the span, as they combined to issue 10 hits, eight walks and two hit batters while allowing a .455 average against ... the bullpen was once again saddled with a loss on Tuesday of this week, as Josh Robins allowed a go-ahead solo homer in the eighth inning as USC broke a 2-2 tie en route to capturing a 3-2 victory.
COULDN'T BEAT THE BUZZER: In a sport that does not feature a game clock, LMU baseball may have run out of time on 2/25 as they attempted to come from behind to defeat Oregon at LMU's Page Stadium ... the Lions scored three runs in the bottom of the eighth to cut a five-run deficit to 9-7, but the game was called due to curfew after eight innings ... due to a flight schedule for Oregon, the two sides agreed to not start a new inning after 4:45 p.m., and the Lions were busy putting together the rally in the eighth as the clock moved past the deadline ... Ryne Nelson, who took over on the mound and walked in the final Lion run of the game, eventually struck out Jamey Smart and Trevin Esquerra to seal the victory and strand the bases loaded.
SCOUTING THE RAINBOW WARRIORS: Hawai'i enters the weekend series with LMU sporting a 5-2 overall record and most recently split a four-game series with fellow WCC team BYU ... Adam Fogel leads the offense with a .455 average, six runs scored, four doubles, two homers and four RBI ... the Rainbow Warriors are hitting .268 as a team, while the pitching staff has registered a 2.03 ERA ... all four of the starters that will face the Lions carry an ERA below 3.50, bookended by RHPs Jackson Reese and Logan Pouelsen at 1.50 ... both pitchers are 1-0 on the season ... Hawai'i pitching has struck out 50 in 62 innings of work ... the Rainbow Warriors are led by 17th-year head coach Mike Trapasso.
TICKET PACKAGES ARE ON SALE: Season ticket packages for the 2018 season are now on sale ... new ticket plans start at $50 for a General Admission season ticket, while Reserved season tickets can be purchased for $99 ... members of LMU's Little Lions Club also get into all LMU home baseball games as part of the membership, while students, faculty and staff with a valid One Card also receive free General Admission access to every home game ... Reserved season tickets behind home plate include a nameplate on your chair identifying your seat(s) ... fans can also package a mini plan to include any five home games this year, with prices starting at $30 ... General Admission mini plans provide access to all General Admission areas of Page Stadium, while a Reserved mini plan secures a seat in the chair-back sections behind home plate ... General Admission mini plans can be purchased for $30, while Reserved mini plans cost $50 ... to purchase season tickets, mini plans or single-game tickets, please contact the LMU Box Office at 310-338-5466 or visit LMULions.com/tickets.
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