PULLMAN, Wash. – Michael Monda’s infield single with two outs in the bottom of the 10th inning scored Patrick McGrath and provided Washington State a 6-5 victory over California in Pac-12 Conference baseball, Sunday at Bailey-Brayton Field.
With the victory, the Cougars (15-13, 6-3 Pac-12) swept the three-game series with the Golden Bears (14-15, 3-6). It was the first sweep of a conference opponent by Washington State since 2010 at home against USC.
“Sunday in this conference is always a grind,” Cougar Head Coach Donnie Marbut said. “We missed some opportunities to extend our lead before we got to extra innings, but I could not be happier for Michael Monda. A lot of guys contributed to this win.”
McGrath led off the game-winning rally with an infield single against Chris Muse-Fisher (0-2), the fifth of six California pitchers. Trace Tam Sing moved McGrath to second with his third sacrifice of the game and Collin Slaybaugh was intentionally walked. Alex Martinez relieved Muse-Fisher and retired Trek Stemp on a ground out that moved runners to second and third. Monda then hit a ball in the hole between short and third and easily beat shortstop Derek Campbell’s throw to first for the game-ending hit.
The Cougars led 3-2 after eight innings before the Golden Bears scored three times off Ian Hamilton, the Pac-12 leader in saves with 10. Trailing for the first time during the weekend, Washington State scored twice in its half of the ninth to tie the game 5-5.
Slaybaugh led off with a single and took third on a single by Stemp. Pinch hitter Wes Leow worked a walk to load the bases. A fielder’s choice off the bat of Nick Tanielu pulled the Cougars within a run and Ben Roberts singled to tie the score.
Sean Hartnett (2-0), the sixth pitcher and 20th Cougar to appear in the game, worked a 1-2-3 top of the 10th to pick up the victory.
Washington State took a 1-0 lead in the first when Stemp walked with one out, moved to second on a ground out, and scored on a Tanielu single. California answered in the second with its only run off Cougar starter Jason Monda in the southpaw’s seven innings of work.
In the fifth, Yale Rosen opened the inning with a single, stole second with two outs, and scored on a single by P.J. Jones. The Cougars added a run in the sixth on a pinch hit double by Cooper Elliott, his first-collegiate hit, a sacrifice by Tam Sing, and a two-out single by Stemp. California scored a run in the eighth off Sam Triece setting the stage for late-inning drama.
Washington State plays BYU in Pasco, Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. before returning to Pullman for a three-game series with Oregon State, Friday-Sunday.