Cougars Capture Banana Belt Tournament Title
March 5, 2005
LEWISTON, Idaho - The Washington State baseball team captured the Banana Belt Tournament title for the second consecutive season Saturday with a 9-7 win over host Lewis-Clark State at Harris Field. It is the 20th time in school history that the Cougars have captured the tournament title.
"This was the best team victory of the season for us," WSU Head Coach Donnie Marbut said. "We stuck with it. We played a solid game with good offense, good defense and great pitching."
Wayne Daman Jr. (2-0) started the game for the Cougars (10-8) but drew a no decision in the match. Daman pitched 5.2 innings, allowing five runs on seven hits. Co-captain Dane Renkert (1-0) earned the win for WSU, throwing only two innings while giving up four hits and two runs. Freshman Jayson Miller earned his first save of the season for the Cougs. During the tournament, Miller pitched six innings of perfect ball in relief.
LCSC (8-3) sent six pitchers to the mound, including four in the seventh inning, but it was relief pitcher Derrick Landavazo (1-1) who earned the loss. Landavazo pitched 0.2 innings, allowing four runs on two hits in WSU's eight-run rally in the seventh inning.
The Warriors scored their first five runs of the game on three home runs. Allen Balmer hit a solo shot to right in the first to give LCSC an early lead. In the fourth inning, Brandon Morris hit the second homer of the day with a solo shot to center field. The third long ball of the game came in the fifth when Josh Celigoy went yard with a three-run homer to left field.
LCSC starting pitcher Kyle Wright held WSU scoreless until the seventh inning, when the Cougs exploded for eight runs and sent 12 batters they sent to the plate. Three of the runs came on run-scoring singles by Zach McAngus, Jim Murphy and Brady Everett. Zach Kosturos had two doubles in the inning, one accounting for two runs. The pair of doubles extended Kosturos' current hitting streak to ten games. The remaining three runs of the inning were plated on a wild pitch and a fielding error that allowed two runs to score.
The Cougars posted one more run in the top of the eighth when Jason Freeman hit a single up the right side that scored Justin McClure.
LCSC failed to regain the lead, but posted a pair of runs in its half of the eighth. The Warriors' Matt Vogel hit a double to center that scored D.J. Kooken. The next batter, Justin Fuller then singled up the middle to score Vogel.
In the ninth, LCSC had the tying run at the plate twice but both times were unsuccessful in producing any runs.
Washington State returns to action this weekend with a three-game series at home against Northern Colorado in their first appearance at Bailey-Brayton Field. Friday's opener begins at 3 p.m. with other game times set for Saturday at 1 p.m. and Sunday at noon.
TOURNAMENT NOTE: WSU finishes the tournament with a 3-1 record...wins title game because of victory over LCSC...LCSC is the only other team that could finish the tournament with a 3-1 record...Gonzaga finishes tournament with a 2-2 record...Utah Valley State finishes with a 1-3 record, the only victory coming against tournament champions WSU...Portland currently has a record of 1-2 during tournament play...the only remaining Banana Belt game will be played Sunday when Portland faces off against host LCSC.
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