March 31, 2010
BELLEVUE, Wash. - Generations of Washington State University baseball players gathered, Wednesday night for An Evening With Cougar Baseball.
Among the approximately 300 attendees were nearly 30 Cougars who played professionally, including former Major League Baseball players Rick Austin, Ron Cey, Joe McIntosh, Tom Niedenfuer and John G. Olerud. The latter was the keynote speaker for the event that raised $56,000 for the Cougar Baseball Excellence Fund.
"It's nice to be able to give back to Washington State," Olerud said. "I had a great experience when I was at Washington State. I remember going to events like this when I was a player for coach (Bobo) Brayton."
Cey, a six-time MLB All-Star, was a teammate of Niedenfuer's on the 1981 World Champion Los Angeles Dodgers.
"It's particularly gratifying tonight because I haven't had a lot of contact with these players in the past," Cey said.
The coaching staff and student-athletes comprising the 2010 Cougar team were in attendance and had the opportunity to interact with the WSU alumni and coach Brayton.
"I am so grateful for the foundation that coach Brayton and the men here tonight have built for our team," WSU Head Coach Donnie Marbut said. "We want to take this program even further than the levels it has reached in the past."
The Cougars open their Pacific-10 Conference schedule with a three-game series at Washington beginning, Thursday at 6 p.m.