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Gonzaga's Hot Start Leads Bulldogs Past Cougs
Courtesy: Washington State Athletics
Release: 06/21/1999
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February 20, 1999

Box Score

PASCO, Wash. - The Gonzaga University baseball team scored eight runs in the first four innings and used a solid two-hit, six-inning pitching performance from starter Barry Mathews to earn a 10-5 non-conference victory over Washington State in front of 411 fans at Posse Stadium.

Mathews (Northridge, Calif.) didn't give up a hit through the first three innings and scattered two hits and two runs in his six inning performance. He struck out four while walking five to pick up his first win of the season. Steve Bennett, Forrest Higgins, and John Herbert also saw mound action in the Zag's second win of 1999.

The Bulldogs came out of the gates hot tagging Washington State starter Jamaal Gaines (0-2) for four runs in the first frame. Gaines settled down in the second and third innings before falling at the hands of four unearned runs in the fourth inning to give the Bulldogs an 8-0 advantage.

The Cougar bullpen proved to be effective once again allowing just two runs in five innings of work. Justin Nakaishi (Syracuse, Utah), Les McTavish (Slave Lake, Alberta), Tyson Thompson (Bothell, Wash.), and Tony Dawson (Oakland, Calif.) combined to shut down the Bulldog hitting attack. Thompson, a freshman who was drafted in the 23rd round in the amateur baseball draft by Pittsburgh in 1998, struck out two in a perfect inning of work.

Gonzaga shortstop Bo Hart got things started in the first with a leadoff double down the left field line. Mathews helped his own cause at the plate with a run-scoring double to add to the Zag's four-run first inning.

In the fourth Hart reached on a fielding error by Cougar third baseman David Perriera (Ewa Beach, Hawai'i), opening the flood gates for the Bulldog offense. After a run-scoring single by Kevin Taylor, Jason Bay hit a three-run home run to push Gonzaga's lead to eight.

The Bulldog offense was kept in check in the fifth, before Bay could strike again with his second home run in as many at-bats. This one was a solo homer off the top of the centerfield fence. Hart added his first home run of the year in the sixth. Bay finished with a 3-for-4 day and every Gonzaga starter recorded at least one hit.

In the sixth the Cougs started on the comeback trail much to help of Dusty Edler's (Yakima, Wash.) two-run home run deep over the left field fence. Steve Curran (Bellevue, Wash.) added a pinch-hit, two-run home run in the eighth inning. WSU added a single tally in the ninth when Evan Hecker (Seattle, Wash.) scored his first collegiate run.

Jason Grove (Walla Walla, Wash.) was the only Cougar to have more than one hit and remains in a torrid streak at the plate. He is in the midst of a 13-game hitting streak dating back to April 26, 1998 and is hitting at a .571 (16-for-28) clip for the '99 season. Grove was 2-for-3 with an RBI and a pair of runs scored Saturday. Boyd Robertson (Richland, Wash.) added a solid defensive performance at second base infront of his hometown crow.

The Zags (2-3) and Cougs (4-2) will play the rubber match of the three-game series Sunday with a 1 p.m. contest at Posse Stadium in Pasco, Wash. Todd Meldahl (Butte, Mont.) will get his second start of the season after taking a no-decision against New Mexico State in his season debut.

GONZAGA   400 402 000 - 10 13  1
WSU       000 002 021 -  5  5  1
Washington State Cougars Cougar Athletic Fund