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Baseball Preps for Kent State

Logan Davis.

Feb. 21, 2013

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ON DECK: The University of San Diego baseball team (0-3) will look for their first win of the season, as they resume action this weekend with a four-game series against 2012 College World Series participant, Kent State.  Friday the series will begin at 6 p.m.  The teams will then play a double-header on Saturday beginning at 1 p.m., and the series will come to an end on Sunday with a 1 p.m. game.  All games this week will be played at Fowler Park and Cunningham Field.

SCOUTING THE GOLDEN FLASH: Kent State enters the games this weekend with an 0-4 overall record after dropping two games to Virginia Tech and two games two games against UNC Willimington.  The Toreros and Golden Flash have never met in baseball before.  The Kent State offense is paced by Tommy Mannott, who is hitting .368 with seven hits, two doubles and one RBI.  On the mound, right-hander Tyler Skulina anchors down the rotation, as he is 0-0 with a 5.40 ERA in one outing this year.  Kent State is under the direction of ninth-year head coach Scott Stricklin.

LAST TIME OUT: The University of San Diego baseball team (0-3) couldn't avoid being swept by San Diego State (3-0), losing 5-3 Sunday afternoon at Fowler Park.  For the second day in a row, the Toreros had the tying run on second base with no outs in the bottom of the ninth, but once again failed to bring him home, spoiling San Diego's opening weekend at Fowler Park.  Max MacNabb (0-1) was saddled with the loss, allowing five runs, three earned, on six hits in 5.0 innings of work.  Junior shortstop Logan Davis, who continues to impress in his debut season with the Toreros, went 3-for-3 with two runs scored.

DAVIS IMPRESSIVE IN OPENING WEEKEND: Junior shortstop Logan Davis was one of the bright spots for the Torero offense in the opening weekend of play against San Diego State.  Davis paced the Toreros offense with an impressive .857 batting average, as he went 6-for-7 at the plate with a pair of runs scored.  Davis began his Torero career on Friday with a perfect  3-for-3 performance, then followed that up with a 0-1 performance on Saturday, and finally had another 3-for-3 day on Sunday in another start for USD.

WAGNER K'S EIGHT IN DEBUT: Junior right-hander Michael Wagner had an impressive first outing for the Toreros this past Saturday.  The Las Vegas, native recorded eight strikeouts in a losing effort.  After Wagner had a rocky start of the game, surrendering two runs in the first inning, he then proceeded to retire 13 of his next 14 batters.  In all, Wagner was saddled with the loss, as he allowed three runs on eight hits in 6.0 innings of work.

MacNABB LOOKING GOOD: Junior lefty Max MacNabb had a strong outing in his debut on Sunday.  MacNabb was saddled with the loss on Sunday, but he managed to hold the Aztec bats at bay through most of his outing, as she retired five of the first six batters he faced, before SDSU managed to score in the top of the third inning.  MacNabb also managed to record five strikeouts in his debut.  

A LOOK AHEAD: The Toreros will hit the road for the first time in 2013 next week, as they head east and take on Coastal Carolina on Thursday at 1 p.m. before competing in the UNC Wilmington Tournament over the weekend.  USD will take on Gardner-Webb on Friday at noon, before playing host UNC Wilmington on Saturday at 4 p.m.  The Toreros will then conclude the road swing on Sunday with a 10 a.m. game against Stony Brook.

TOREROS RETURN EIGHT ALL-WCC PERFORMERS: The Toreros will feature eight returning All-WCC performers from last season, highlighted by preseason All-American's Kris Bryant and Michael Wagner.  Along with these two, USD welcomes back All-WCC first-teamer Andrew Daniel, as well as All-WCC honorable mentions honorees, Austin Bailey, Louie Lechich, Dillon Haupt, AJ Robinson and All-WCC freshman team member Connor Joe.  

BRYANT HAULS IN PRESEASON All-AMERICAN ACCOLADES: Junior third baseman Kris Bryant has been hauling in all the preseason accolades this season.  Bryant has been tabbed a preseason All-American by Baseball America, Collegiate Baseball, Perfect Game, and by the NCBWA.  Bryant, a 6-5 junior from Las Vegas, Nev., finished the 2012 season with a .366 batting average after recording 78 hits, 17 doubles, three triples and 14 home runs. Bryant also recorded 57 RBI and was slugging at a .671 clip at season's end. Bryant was a first-team All-WCC selection for the second consecutive season and helped lead USD to the third best record in program history at 40-17, and he was a first-team All-America selection by Baseball America last season.

WAGNER A PRESEASON ALL-AMERICAN: Junior right-handed pitcher Michael Wagner has been tabbed a preseason All-America by the NCBWA, and by Louisville Slugger.  Wagner, a 6-4 junior right-handed pitcher from Las Vegas, Nev., had a great season on the mound for the Toreros in 2012, as he recorded a 5-2 record, with a 2.58 ERA and he set both the USD and WCC single-season saves record with 19. In 59.1 innings of work, Wagner struck out 53 batters, while only issuing 20 walks, and opponents only hit .246 off of him. In conference action, Wagner was 2-0 with a 5.03 ERA, and five saves en route to a first-team All-WCC selection. He was a NCBWA second-team All-American selection last season as well.

TOREROS WELCOME BACK A PAIR OF FRESHMAN ALL-AMERICANS: San Diego welcomes back a pair of freshman All-Americans from a year ago in the form of Andrew Daniel and Austin Bailey.  Daniel, a 6-1 sophomore infielder from San Diego, exploded onto the scene as a true freshman, hitting .339 with 78 hits, 18 doubles, two triples, four home runs and 45 RBI. In WCC action, Daniel continued to have a hot stick, as he hit .323 with 32 hits, nine doubles, two home runs and 21 RBI en route to a first-team All-WCC honor. Bailey, a 5-10 sophomore second baseman from Temecula, Calif., had a great rookie campaign for the Toreros, as he hit .273 with 44 hits, seven doubles, two triples and had 20 RBI. In conference action, Bailey hit .264 with 19 hits, three doubles, one triple and seven RBI.

THE POLLS: San Diego dropped out of all the polls they were in after opening up the season 0-3 against San Diego State.  Kent State is also not ranked in any of the top-25 polls this week. .

TWO TOREROS NAMED TO PRESEASON ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM: Junior third baseman Kris Bryant and sophomore infielder Andrew Daniel were named to the preseason All-WCC team.  In WCC action last season, Bryant hit .326 with 31 hits, six doubles, two triples, seven home runs and had 25 RBI.  Bryant also slugged at a .653 clip and had an on base percentage of .409.  Daniel on the other hand, was just behind Bryant in WCC games, as he hit .323 with 32 hits, nine doubles, two home runs and 29 RBI.  Daniel had an on base percentage of .387 and was slugging at a .475 clip.

TOREROS TABBED WCC FAVORITES IN WCC PRESEASON POLL: The University of San Diego has been selected to win the 2013 West Coast Conference baseball championship, in a preseason poll of the WCC's nine head coaches. The Toreros earned six of eight possible first-place votes and 62 overall points in the poll. Last year's West Coast Conference champion, Pepperdine University, earned 53 points and picked up two first place votes in the annual survey.  Gonzaga University garnered a first place vote and tallied 49 points to finish third in the poll. Loyola Marymount University captured 47 points to finish fourth. The University of San Francisco was selected fifth with 39 points, while BYU was tabbed sixth with 24 points. The University of Portland (19 points), Santa Clara University (16 points), and Saint Mary's College (15 points) rounded out the poll.  

TORERO SKIPPER Rich Hill: San Diego's Rich Hill has built the USD Toreros into one of the most successful Division I baseball programs on the West Coast. The 2013 spring season will be Hill's 26th year as a head coach at the collegiate level, and 15th at USD, having enjoyed 22 winning seasons in 25 years. Since taking over at USD in 1999, Hill has been remarkable in leading the Toreros to 14 winning campaigns, rewriting the school record book en route to claiming five West Coast Conference Championship titles in 2002, 2003, 2007, 2008 and 2010. Under his leadership San Diego has averaged 35 wins per season, including winning a school record 44 games in 2008, a year in which Hill was honored by his peers as the WCC Coach of the Year. In 2007, Hill led USD to its highest national ranking in program history at No. 4, as well as USD's first-ever national seed in the NCAA Regionals.  In 2008, Hill guided the Toreros into the championship game of the Long Beach Regional, marking the first time USD had reached that game in a NCAA Division I Regional.

2013 GAMETRACKER AVAILABLE: All of San Diego's home games, and select road games can be followed live via Gametracker on the Toreros athletic web site at Gametracker is a service of CBS College Sports, the official web provider for San Diego athletics, and is a real time update of the action.

CAN YOU SEE ME?: All USD home games, as well as select road games, will be streamed live via video on the athletics department website. Fans can watch all the action live from the comfort of their home by logging onto Simply go to the baseball schedule page and click on the WATCH link to view that days game. The voice of the Toreros, Jack Murray, will be providing live play-by-play of all home games as well as select road games this season.