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Sunday, May 13, 2012

Saturday college roundup

Kendall Rogers        

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TEAM OF THE DAY: Oklahoma -- The Sooners entered the weekend in dire straits from an NCAA postseason standpoint, but are giving themselves a chance by sweeping a pair of games from Baylor to begin the weekend. OU starting pitcher Jordan John was terrific in 8 2/3 shutout innings in the first game of the day, while another talented righty, Jonathan Gray, allowed just a run in 7 1/3 innings in the second game. Did OU just reopen its postseason resume? You bet.

UPSET OF THE DAY: Utah over Oregon State -- The Beavers were a long shot to make an NCAA Regional entering the weekend to begin with, but they took a step back on Saturday with a 4-3 extra-inning loss to Utah. Utes pitchers Joe Pond and Tyler Wagner each threw well in the triumph over the Beavers.

PLAYER OF THE DAY: RHP Ross Stripling, Texas A&M -- Stripling skipped his graduation at A&M to pitch against San Diego State on Saturday. Good thing he did, because he had a memorable final regular season start at Blue Bell Park. Stripling tossed a 106-pitch no-hitter in a 1-0 win over the Aztecs. He faced the minimum in the game, and threw 71 of his 106 pitches for strikes.


North Carolina State (36-12) -- The Wolfpack has put together quite the campaign this spring. They moved stud left-handed pitcher Carlos Rodon to the Friday spot in the weekend rotation this week, and that moved was a shining success. Rodon struck out 11 in 7 1/3 innings of work in a 4-2 win over Virginia Tech, while reliever Travis Orwig was fantastic in the nightcap, as the Wolfpack captured a 6-2 decision.

Auburn (28-23) -- The Tigers were on the bad side of the NCAA postseason bubble entering the weekend, but certainly helped their case by winning a road series over Arkansas, capturing a 12-5 triumph in the series finale. Jay Gonzalez and Ryan Tella each had three hits in the game, while Patrick Savage had two hits, one a home run.

Mississippi State (31-19) -- After dropping the series finale with ace pitcher Chris Stratton on the mound, the Bulldogs desperately needed a strong performance from right-handed hurler Kendall Graveman. He didn’t disappoint, putting together a great showing in a 2-0 win over Florida. The righty struck out three and allowed just three hits in 7 2/3 innings, while reliever Jonathan Holder tossed 1 1/3 scoreless innings.

Clemson (30-20) -- The Tigers are another team jockeying for position on the NCAA postseason race, and they started the weekend on a positive note with a very impressive 7-2 win over suddenly beatable Florida State. Clemson starting pitcher Dominic Leone struck out five and allowed just two runs in five innings, while young reliever Daniel Gossett tossed four scoreless frames to finish the game. 

UCLA (34-13) -- The Bruins picked up a nice home series win over Purdue last weekend, and they’re taking care of business on the road this weekend against Washington. UCLA starting pitcher Nick Vander Tuig allowed just three runs in 6 1/3 innings, while outfielder Jeff Gelalich had a home run and three hits in an 11-3 triumph to clinch an important road series victory.


San Diego (37-13) -- The Toreros were red hot entering the weekend, but have taken a big step back with a pair of losses to Loyola Marymount, dropping an 8-6 decision on Saturday despite a fierce late-inning rally. USD was unable to get much going off LMU stud freshman starting pitcher Trevor Megill, who struck out 12 and allowed just two runs in seven innings of work.

Georgia Tech (30-21) -- The Yellow Jackets might be in some trouble if they don’t finish the weekend series against the Cavaliers with at least one win. Jackets starting pitcher Jake Davies was lifted after allowing four runs in 4 2/3 innings, as GT dropped a 4-2 decision to Virginia to lose the series. The Jackets were unable to do much against Virginia’s pitching staff. 

Cal State Fullerton (31-15) -- The Titans haven’t had too many bad games this season, but they certainly did on Saturday, dropping a 7-1 decision to UC Santa Barbara. Fullerton starting pitcher Kenny Mathews allowed three runs in five innings of work, while the Titans didn’t do much against starting pitching Anthony Vasquez and the Gauchos pitching staff.

Central Florida (39-12) -- The Knights once again suffered a significant RPI hit on Saturday with yet another bad loss, dropping a 9-6 decision to Marshall. UCF starting pitcher Brian Adkins allowed five runs on six hits in 5 2/3 innings of work, while reliever Garrett Nuss only recorded two outs and allowed four runs on four hits. 

Gonzaga (29-19) -- The Bulldogs aren’t doing a single thing to help their NCAA postseason cause this weekend. Gonzaga starting pitcher Derek Callahan didn’t get out of the first inning without allowing five runs on four hits, as the Zags dropped a tough 10-1 decision to Arizona State to lose the series.

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