UCSD (20-18, 14-14 CCAA) at No. 3 Chico State (30-6, 23-5 CCAA)
Friday, Apr. 19 • 6 p.m.
RHP Ryan Goodbrand (6-3, 3.33 ERA) vs. TBA
Saturday, Apr. 20 • 12 p.m. (DH)
TBA vs. TBA
TBA vs. TBA
Sunday, Apr. 21 • 11 a.m.
TBA vs. TBA
Nettleton Stadium • Chico, Calif.
Live Audio • Live Stats
TRITONS FACE TALL TASK ON HOME TURF OF RED-HOT WILDCATS
Following a non-conference split at home against Point Loma and Azusa Pacific last week, UCSD returns to California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) action this weekend for 12 final contests, 10 of them on the road, beginning in Chico. UCSD is 20-18 overall and an even 14-14 in the CCAA, still sitting in a tie for sixth. First-place Chico State is 30-6 overall and 23-5 in league play. The Tritons are 6-8 outside of La Jolla in 2013, while Chico State is 11-1 at home, including a perfect 8-0 in CCAA games. These two teams shared the 2012 CCAA regular-season crown, both at 26-14. The Tritons fly to Sacramento Thursday evening.
The four-game set at No. 3 Chico State’s Nettleton Stadium will run Friday through Sunday, Apr. 19-21. Friday night’s primetime opener at 6 p.m. should see senior right-hander Ryan Goodbrand (6-3, 3.33 ERA) going for the Tritons. A doubleheader will follow on Saturday beginning at noon, with Sunday’s getaway finale set for an 11 a.m. start.
Chico State (23-5) is atop the conference standings by a game over Cal State L.A. (22-6), while UCSD (14-14), currently in a three-way tie for sixth, is among a total of eight teams still vying for the four spots at the 2013 CCAA Championship. The Tritons are two games back of Sonoma State (16-12) in the fourth position and four behind third-place CSUMB (18-10) with 12 to play.
All UCSD home games at Triton Ballpark feature a live online video stream and live stats, both free of charge. This weekend’s series at Chico State will have live audio broadcasts with Mike Baca’s call locally in Northern California on AM 1290 KPAY, and online courtesy of Stretch Internet at ChicoWildcats.com, as well as live stats, all free of charge. Fans can also access the live audio and live stats from the Schedule/Results tab of the baseball page at UCSDtritons.com. Starting lineups, live between-inning updates and other in-game news and notes can be found during home contests and select road games by following Triton Baseball all season long on the UCSD Athletics Twitter handle (@UCSDtritons).
SCOUTING CHICO STATE
Chico State (30-6, 23-5 CCAA) is coming off of a 3-1 series victory at conference foe Cal Poly Pomona. The Broncos’ 1-0 shutout in the seven-inning nightcap of Saturday’s doubleheader snapped a 15-game win streak by the Wildcats. Chico State won the other games by the scores of 8-2, 5-1 and 3-0. In fact, the Wildcats have allowed just 17 runs over their last 12 games, surrendering more than two runs only once during this stretch, in a 10-3 home decision over Cal State San Bernardino on Apr. 6. Chico State’s 2.41 team ERA leads the league. Offensively, though batting just .269, senior outfielder and Oregon State transfer Blake Gibbs is the Wildcats’ main power threat and run producer with team highs of seven home runs and 31 RBI. Cody Webber (.354) and Pierson Jeremiah (.350) boast the top two batting averages and have driven in 25 runs apiece. Eric Angerer (.307) leads the team with 34 runs scored, 24 hit-by-pitches and 11 steals. Dave Taylor is in his seventh season in charge at Chico State.
UCSD holds a tight 29-27 edge over Chico State since 2001 when the Tritons moved up to the NCAA Division II and joined the CCAA. This includes a 17-9 advantage over the last 26 meetings since 2008. UCSD is 23-22 against Chico State in regular-season league contests, 6-3 at the CCAA Championship and 0-2 in NCAA Championship play. The Tritons are 13-12 in La Jolla, 13-12 in Chico and 3-2 at neutral venues, having swept all four games at Nettleton Stadium in their last visit to Chico in 2011. UCSD went 3-1 there in 2009. The Tritons, who have defeated Chico State at the CCAA Championship in each of the past three seasons, went 3-2 last year with all five games taking place in La Jolla. The teams split their four-game series before UCSD posted a 9-1 victory on its way to a fourth straight CCAA Championship crown. In 2005, UCSD fought all the way back after losing its tournament opener at Nettleton to Cal Poly Pomona, to win its first CCAA tourney title. Needing to beat the host Wildcats twice on the final day, the Tritons did just that, taking a pair of narrow one-run decisions, both in extra innings, 5-4 in 11 and 7-6 in 12.
Senior first baseman Richard Seigel paces the conference with his 10 home runs and .656 slugging percentage. His career-best total in long balls trumps Cal State L.A.’s James Wharton by one. If he hung on to his lead, he would become the first Triton to top the CCAA in home runs since Matt Cantele blasted 23 in 2007. Seigel also has produced three triples and 10 doubles, and is tied for fourth in the league with his team-leading 34 runs batted in.
CRUZ OFF TO GREAT START AS COLLEGIATE STARTING PITCHER
Freshman dual threat Troy Cruz has won each of his first three starting assignments on the mound, the first two coming in seven-inning shutouts (4-0 and 3-0). All three have completed doubleheader sweeps at home in league play, two of them over nationally-ranked Cal State L.A. (3/16) and Cal State East Bay (3/29). The Chula Vista native tossed 16.2 scoreless frames to begin his first three college starts, before finally surrendering a two-run fifth to San Francisco State (4/6). He needed just 89 pitches and 87 minutes against East Bay to produce the first and only complete game by a Triton pitcher in 2013 and first individual shutout since Feb. 12, 2011.
TRITONS CRUZ TO THREE STRAIGHT DOUBLEHEADER SWEEPS
Just prior to breaking for final exams, UCSD posted a 3-1 series victory over then-28th-ranked Cal State L.A., Mar. 14-16. It was a first series win for the Tritons since another 3-1 triumph over Cal State Stanislaus to kick off the league ledger, Feb. 15-17. Freshman Troy Cruz led the way in clinching the weekend success against the Golden Eagles as the Tritons took both ends of the Saturday doubleheader. The Chula Vista product reached base in all five plate appearances, drawing four walks and scoring three times, in a comfortable 10-2 win in the first game. He then took the mound for his collegiate debut as a starting pitcher and tossed five scoreless innings in a 4-0 seven-inning combined shutout. UCSD has swept three straight CCAA doubleheaders, all at home, behind Blake Fassler and Cruz starts on the mound.
Ryan Goodbrand has been the Triton ace for a second year in a row. The right-handed staff ace earned the winning decision in each of his first five 2013 starts. He threw 31.1 innings of shutout baseball prior to surrendering a five-run sixth to Cal Poly Pomona in a 7-6 home victory on Feb. 28. Goodbrand’s senior campaign began with a workmanlike five frames against then-No. 20 Colorado Mesa at home on Feb. 1, when he allowed just three hits without a walk, retiring six Mavericks on strikes and four more on ground balls of the 15 outs he recorded before exiting on a 75-pitch limit. At Grand Canyon on Feb. 8, Goodbrand’s no-hit bid was broken up on an infield single with one out in the sixth. He was replaced after that inning with just two hits and two walks against him. Back home on Feb. 15 in UCSD’s conference opener, Goodbrand scattered three hits over 7.0 scoreless frames, striking out 11, believed to be his highest single-game output at any level of organized baseball. At CSUDH on Feb. 21, he gave up five singles and a walk with eight strikeouts in 8.0 innings. Goodbrand’s undefeated run in a Triton uniform and streak of winning decisions in nine straight appearances finally snapped at then-22nd-ranked Sonoma State on Mar. 8. He had gone a minimum of 5.0 frames in each of his first 22 stints prior to lasting 4.2 innings on Mar. 28. Goodbrand is 17-3 in 24 career starts. UCSD is 19-5 when he starts.
NO FREE PASS FROM FASS
Junior right-hander Blake Fassler has made six starts since joining the Triton rotation, and won two straight, at Sonoma State (3/10) and at home against Cal State L.A. (3/16), prior to three straight no-decisions. He went six complete innings in those back-to-back wins without allowing a single walk. Fassler threw a total of 21.1 consecutive innings without issuing a base on balls before that streak was snapped in his final inning on Mar. 29. He has walked six in 46.1 frames.
The Tritons are back atop the CCAA in steals in 2013, now ahead of CSUDH (52) with 58 on 80 attempts. Danny Susdorf has been successful on 23 of his 27 tries to lead the conference. Dillon Moyer is tied for sixth with 11 on 13 attempts. UCSD led the CCAA and ranked 27th nationally in the NCAA Division II with 103 stolen bases in 2012, achieving a new single-season program record. The previous mark of 101 had been set in 1985 and matched in 1988.
SUSDORF MOVING UP ALL-TIME CHARTS
Danny Susdorf’s team-leading 50 hits in 2013 have moved him from 10th up into fourth-place on the program’s all-time list, now with 270. Former teammates Vance Albitz (329; 2007-10) and Evan Kehoe (310; 2008-11), and Garrett Imeson (306; 2006-09) are the lone Tritons ahead of Susdorf in the 300-Hit Club. Susdorf’s .379 career average (270-for-712) is fourth all-time at UCSD behind Brandon Gregorich (.424; 2009-10), Ryan Hill (.386; 1997-99) and John Dickinson (.380; 1976-79). He is first in triples (17), second in steals (72), fifth in doubles (54) and fifth in runs (163). Imeson (59) and Kehoe (164) are next on the doubles and runs charts, respectively.
LA FACE’S IRONMAN STREAK CONTINUES
Junior catcher/DH Nick La Face has drawn 95 starts in a row dating back to the 2012 season opener. He had reached base safely in 29 consecutive games, with the last nine of 2012, and each of the first 20 contests this year, before that streak was ended in the first game of the doubleheader at Sonoma State on Mar. 9. La Face paces the conference with 30 walks.
MOYER MAKING AN IMPACT
Junior Dillon Moyer, the son of long-time former Major League Baseball pitcher and 2003 MLB All-Star Jamie Moyer, has started all 38 games so far at shortstop in his first season with the Tritons. The transfer from Division I UC Irvine is hitting .308 and has both a four-hit (Feb. 10) and four-RBI (Feb. 17) game to his credit in 2013. Moyer produced his first collegiate home run, a three-run shot, versus Cal Poly Pomona on Mar. 1. He has 11 steals on 13 attempts, 26 runs and 23 RBI.
FOLLOW THE TRITONS
There are a number of ways to follow the Tritons. In addition to UCSDtritons.com, get instant updates on Twitter (@UCSDtritons) and like us on Facebook. For a more visual approach, watch our YouTube channel. Head coach Eric Newman is also on Twitter (@CoachEricNewman).
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