April 3, 2005
(San Diego, CA) - Gonzaga rallied to score three runs in the ninth and added a run in the eleventh to comeback and defeat San Diego on USD's home field of Cunningham Stadium Sunday afternoon.
San Diego (19-17-1; 5-7 WCC) held a three-run lead entering the ninth, needing three outs to move into a first-place tie with Gonzaga (18-10; 5-3 WCC) in the West Coast Conference (WCC) Coast Division standings, but the Zags scored three times to force extra innings, highlighted by Shawn Wayt's two-RBI single.
The Toreros built an early 4-0 lead, scoring once in the first inning and twice in the second. USD freshman outfielder Justin Snyder went 4-for-6 and drove in three runs. Snyder hit his first collegiate triple, accounting for one of San Diego's six extra-base hits on the afternoon.
The USD pitching combination of freshman starter Matt Couch and senior mid-reliever Sean Warlop combined to limit Gonzaga to three runs through seven innings. Couch left in the fifth with USD leading 4-2 and Warlop gave-way to closer Matt Falk with USD up 6-3 in the eighth.
The Bulldogs went quietly in the eighth but Falk issued a pair of walks to begin the ninth, fueling the three-run comeback. Sophomore Aaron McGuinness followed with an RBI-single up the middle and Wayt tied the game at six with one of his three hits. Both Wayt (3-for-6) and McGuinness (3-for-4) had productive outings for a Bulldog team that totaled 17 hits collectively.
Falk (1-2) induced a double-play groundball and an inning-ending fly out to escape the ninth without surrendering the lead. He would remain in the game to pitch the tenth and eleventh, eventually being tagged with the loss after allowing seven hits and four walks- the deciding blow coming off the bat of Gonzaga freshman Darin Holcomb, who singled in Wayt with one out in the eleventh.
In relief of three Zag pitchers, including junior starter Jay Byner who lasted just three innings, Nate Williams (2-0) allowed one run over five innings and kept USD off the scoreboard late to earn the win.