| Publication Date: Friday, April 08, 2005|
Cardinal baseball eyes the Pac-10 lead
Cardinal baseball eyes the Pac-10 lead
(April 08, 2005)
by Rick Eymer
First place in the Pac-10 conference will be at stake this weekend when the Stanford baseball team hosts Oregon State beginning with a 6 p.m. game today.
The 10th-ranked Cardinal enter the series riding a four-game winning streak after coming back from a deficit to beat visiting Santa Clara, 7-6, on Tuesday night.
Stanford ace Mark Romanczuk (5-3, 3.98) will pitch against Beavers' ace Dallas Buck (6-0, 0.84) in today's opener.
Jeff Gilmore (5-1, 3.20) is scheduled to go against Anton Maxwell (5-0, 4.03) in Saturday's 1 p.m. contest. Jonah Nickerson (6-0, 1.17) is scheduled to start for Oregon State in Sunday's 1 p.m. series finale. Stanford has yet to name a starter.
Brendan Domaracki's triple in the bottom of the seventh inning scored Michael Taylor with the game-winning run against the Broncos, erasing a six-run deficit.
John Mayberry, Jr. and Jed Lowrie each drove in two runs and Domaracki, Taylor and Jim Rapoport each had two hits.
Stanford trailed 6-0 after four innings.
Matt Manship (2-0) earned the victory as the third of five Stanford pitchers. He pitched two scoreless innings, giving up a hot and striking out two. Nolan Gallagher pitched the ninth to earn his third save.
Tricia Aggabao tripled home two runs in the bottom of the fourth and that was all the support Laura Severson and Becky McCullough needed as Stanford defeated visiting San Jose State, 2-0, in a nonconference game on Wednesday night.
Stanford (26-7) continues Pac-10 play this weekend when No. 12 UCLA visits today at 7 p.m., and No. 20 Washington comes to town on Saturday and Sunday, both at 1 p.m.
The Cardinal swept last year's season series with UCLA, and took one of three from Washington.
Lauren Lappin and Leah Nelson walked ahead of Aggabao's two-out triple.
Severson allowed three hits in her four innings to earn her 12th win in 16 decisions, while McCullough allowed three hits in three innings to earn her first career save.
San Jose State had just one runner reach as far as third in the game, and second baseman Lindsay Key started a double play in the sixth to end another threat.
Lappin is among the 25 finalists for the USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year Award.
While injuries may have sidelined one of Stanford's most promising seasons, they didn't hinder the 30th-ranked Cardinal postseason dreams.
Stanford gets a chance to set things right on Saturday when it travels to the NCAA West Regional at the Bank of America Arena in Seattle.
Stanford (7-11) is one of six teams who will compete for the chance to advance to the NCAA championships on April 21 in Auburn, Ala.
The top two finishers at Saturday's regional will earn a spot in the national meet.
Stanford is joined by second-ranked UCLA, No. 11 Penn State, No. 14 Central Michigan, No. 24 Washington, and Boise State.
The Cardinal opened the season ranked third in the nation, and were coming off its best finish ever at the NCAA meet (a tie for third) the previous year, but injuries to several key performers, including All-American junior Natalie Foley, slowed their progress.
Foley and freshman Tabitha Yim were named to the all-conference team last week. Foley was named in the all-around, while Yim, who competed in last year's Olympic trials, received her honors on the uneven bars.
Stanford's strongest event this season has been the uneven bars, averaging a 48.805 score on the event.
The Cardinal have finished in the top two spots in each of their last four trips to a regional meet, taking first place in both 2002 and 2004. They are looking to make their fifth straight trip to the NCAA Championship.
Pac-10 rival UCLA ranks in the top-five nationally in every event. The Bruins rank first on vault and bars, while checking in at No. 3 on the balance beam and No. 5 in the floor exercise. UCLA features Pac-10 Gymnast of the Year Kristen Maloney and Pac-10 Freshman of the Year Tasha Schwikert.
Penn State is strong on beam and in the floor exercise where they rank in the top-14 nationally. Central Michigan's Sara Burtinsky is ranked 13th in the nation on bars, and the Chippewas defeated the Cardinal earlier this season.
Host Washington is led by senior captain Carly Dockendorf. The Huskies edged Stanford in the Cardinal's season-opener in January but finished just behind Stanford at the Pac-10 Championship.
Boise State finished third at the Western Gymnastics Conference Championship on March 25th.
Women's water polo
Third-ranked Stanford (5-2, 12-4) travels to No. 17 Arizona State on Saturday for a noon contest.
The Cardinal will be at San Diego State on Sunday at noon.
The Sun Devils upset No. 10 Santa Barbara last week
"Arizona State has been playing very well at home," Stanford coach John Tanner said. "They play solid defense, have been getting good goaltending, and run a dynamic offense."
Nancy El-Sakkary leads Stanford with 23 goals, while Katie Hansen has 22 and Hannah Luber has 19. Goalie Meridith McColl has a 4.92 GAA.
With the Pac-10 championships on the horizon, Stanford is geared up for its final regular-season meet of the year this weekend.
The Cardinal host the Peg Barnard Invitational on Saturday and Sunday at the par-72, 6,168-yard Stanford Golf Course.
Joining Stanford will be Fresno State, Denver, Montana State, Washington, UC Irvine, Oregon, Oregon State, San Francisco, Santa Clara, San Jose State, Portland State and Washington State.
Stanford is coming off of a ninth place finish at the PING/ASU Invitational in Tempe last week. Junior Kelly Husted led the team, tying for 11th individually.
Stanford (9-10, 10-12) prepared for its Mountain Pacific Sports Federation match against host Pacific today at 7 p.m. with an exhibition victory over the California club team, 30-23, 30-27, 25-30, 30-22, on Tuesday night in Burnham Pavilion.
William Clayton recorded 21 kills and Nick Manov had 20 in the victory.
Several Stanford swimmers were honored on the Pac-10 all-academic team. Thomas Brown, Matt Crowe, Jesse Fonner, Gary Marshall, Matt McDonald, Shaun Phillips, and Ben Wildman-Tobriner were named to the first team.
Jayme Cramer, Ricky Eddy, Michael McLean, Adam Peterson, Mark Stephens, and Hongzhe Sun were named second team.
Honorable mention went to Andy Grant and Nick Wolfe, Jr.
Stanford placed 11 student-athletes on the Pac-10 All-Academic team.
Mark Egesdal and Josh Zupancic were both recognized as first team selections, while Matt Gentry, Imad Kharbush, Larry Ozowara and Shawn Ritzenthaler were second team honorees.
Ray Blake, Brennan Corbett, Juston Johnson, Brian Perry and Nathan Peterson were all recognized as honorable mention selections.
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