March 3, 2009
SAN DIEGO, Calif. - A huge six-run first inning highlighted by a Victor Sanchez grand slam helped jump start a 14-7 University of San Diego baseball team win over visiting Western Carolina University Tuesday evening in a non-conference game at Cunningham Stadium.
San Diego (7-3) wasted no time in scoring as they put up six runs on five hits in the first inning. Three consecutive infield singles by Kevin Muno, Steven Chatwood and James Meador loaded the bases with no outs for USD to start the inning. Sanchez then launched his third home run of the season over the right field fence to give USD a 4-0 lead. Sean Nicol then laid down a bunt single to keep things rolling and he moved to second when Chris Engell was hit by a pitch. Nicol and Engel then each stole a base, and the catchers throw to third slipped past the third baseman, which allowed Nicol to come home for the fifth run of the inning. Bryan Haar then drove in the final run on a sacrifice fly to centerfield to give USD a 6-0 advantage.
The 11th-ranked Toreros then added one run in the third and fourth innings before putting up three runs in the fifth inning to give USD a comfortable 11-0 advantage through five innings.
The Catamounts then made the game interesting as they scored three runs in the sixth inning, on a Tyler Kirkpatrick two-run triple and a Trevor Collias run-scoring double. WCU then put up four more runs in the seventh inning to really make the game interesting at 11-7.
But in the bottom of the seventh inning, Chatwood hit his first collegiate home run, a two-run blast over the left field fence, to give USD 13-7 lead, and regain the momentum of the game. The Toreros would score one more run in the eighth inning on a Jose Valerio
run-scoring double to put the game at its final of 14-7.
Chatwood led USD's offense as he went 4-for-5 with one home run and two RBI. Nicol was also hot at the plate as he went 3-for-4 with three stolen bases. Both Engell and Meador went 2-for-4 at the plate with Meador adding in one RBI and Engell added in two RBI.
Chris Jensen (1-2) was credited with the win on the mound for the Toreros as he allowed no runs on three hits in 2.1 innings of work. WCU starter Matt Benedict (0-1) was saddled with the loss for the Catamounts as he allowed seven runs, six earned, on six hits in 2.1 innings of work.
The Toreros will return to action on Thursday as they host cross-town rival San Diego State in a 2 p.m. game at Cunningham Stadium.