April 23, 1999
WESTWOOD, Calif. - The UCLA Bruins handed the Washington State baseball team its 11th consecutive Pacific-10 Conference loss Friday night with a 7-4 defeat of the Cougars at Jackie Robinson Memorial Stadium.
The Cougars are now 18-20 on the year and 1-12 in Pac-10 play. WSU has dropped 15 of its last 18 games and with the loss Friday night are now 4-6 under the lights. After losing seven of their first eight Pac-10 games, the Bruins have rattled off five consecutive conference wins to improve to 22-24 overall and 6-7 in league play.
UCLA starting pitcher Jon Brandt (7-3) picked up his seventh win of the season and his first in Pac-10 play giving up four runs and six hits in six and a third innings. The sophomore right-hander struck out eight Cougars, but walked seven en route to the victory.
Relievers Bobby Roe and Chad Cislak combined to shutout the Cougs over the final two and a third innings giving up only two hits. Cislak picked up his third save of the year while giving up one hit in the ninth.
WSU starter Todd Meldahl (Butte, Mont.) fell to 3-4 on the season giving up six runs and seven hits in just over three innings of work. Reliever Lanakila Niles (Pearl City, Hawaii) and Tyson Thompson (Bothell, Wash.) did an excellent job out of the bullpen combining to give up only one run and three hits in the final five innings. Thompson, a freshman two-way player, gave up just one hit in two innings of work.
The Bruins scored the bulk of its runs in the second through fourth innings. After scoring two runs in both the second and third innings, the Bruins used the long ball to push its lead to 6-0. Chase Utley led off the fourth inning with a solo home run to left field off Meldahl, and Garrett Atkins followed two batters later with his sixth home run of the year.
A balanced 10-hit attack for the Bruins was led by Charles Merricks and leadoff hitter Jack Santora who each contributed two hits apiece.
WSU broke up the shutout in the sixth inning when Ray Hattenburg (Spokane, Wash.) hit his second home run in as many games. The solo shot was his sixth of the year and extended his hitting streak to seven games. The Cougars added three more runs in the top of the seventh with Jason Grove's (Walla Walla, Wash.) fifth double of the year pushing across two runs. Catcher Jeff Scherer (Kennewick, Wash.) connected on his second hit of the game to score Hattenburg cutting UCLA's lead to 7-4.
Scherer finished the game 2-for-5, while Shawn Stevenson (Everett, Wash.) and Steve Curran (Bellevue, Wash.) also collected two hits apiece.
Grove nearly tied the game at seven in the eighth inning, but just missed his 11th home run of the year flying out to deep centerfield. The Cougars were its own worst enemy stranding 13 runners on base and committing three errors. WSU has now had at least one error in 10 consecutive games and have a season total of 72.
WSU and UCLA will square off in the second game of the three-game series Saturday afternoon with a 1 p.m. game at Jackie Robinson Stadium. Jamaal Gaines (Antioch, Calif., 2-3) will match up against Bothell, Wash., native Josh Karp (5-3, 5.20).
WSU 000 001 300 - 4 8 3 UCLA 022 201 00x - 7 10 0Todd Meldahl, Lanakila Niles (4), Tyson Thompson (7), and Jeff Scherer. Jon Brandt, Bobby Roe (7), Chad Cislak (9), and Jason Green. W - ; L - ; S - , HR - Utley (11), Atkins (6), Hattenburg (6). T - ; A - . WSU Hits - Stevenson 2, Grove, Hattenburg, Scherer 2, Curran 2. UCLA Hits - Santora 2, Utley, Atkins, Berry, Green, Lyon, Pearl, Merricks 2. E - Hattenburg (5), Gleason (8), Robertson (5). 2B - Berry (5), Green (13), Grove (5). 3B - None.