Feb. 4, 1997

Cal Baseball Tops Santa Clara, 5-2

BERKELEY, Calif. - The University of California baseball team defeated Santa Clara, 5-2, Tuesday at Evans Diamond in Berkeley, Calif. The Bears improve to 3-2 overall, while the Broncos lose their season opener and fall to 0-1.

Led by a five-run first inning, including a two-run homer by junior left fielder Aaron Gordnier, Cal held on for the 5-2 win in the Bears first home game of the 1997 season.

Cal was able to explode for four hits and five runs off at Santa Clara starter Mike Crudale (0-1), Ivan Lewis started the Bears half of the first with a single, and after Crudale was able to get the next two batters out, Gordnier hit his first collegiate home run to right-centerfield. Cal was able to get three more runs in the first inning off of an RBI double by Jason Hill, an RBI single by Dan Garfin, and a throwing error by Bronco catcher Paul Chiaffredo on a stolen base attempt by Garfin.

Santa Clara was able to get back into the ballgame by limiting the Bears to only four more hits the rest of the game. The Broncos scored a run in the third on a RBI ground out by left fielder Aaron Fuqua, and a run in the seventh on a RBI single by Fuqua. Both times Fuqua scored designated hitter George Mensah, who had singled in the third and was hit by a pitch in the seventh. Mensah finished the game 2-for-3 and center fielder Bill Mott was 2-for-5 with a double.

The winning pitcher for Cal was freshman right-hander Brad Steele (2-0), who came on in the fifth inning and pitched 2.3 innings with one hit, one run, one walk and one strikeout. Steele replaced starter Jim Vorhis, who had a good outing, going 4.0 innings with five hits, one run, one walk and three strikeouts. Junior Doug Nickle came on in the ninth inning and earned his second save of the season. Despite loading the bases with no outs, Nickle was able to get Fuqua to hit a ground ball to Garfin at third base, who forced Gabe Cota out with a throw to the plate, and then after striking out Motta, got Mike Frank to pop out to Garfin for the game's final out.

The Bears next contest will be the first game of a three-game series versus Pepperdine, Friday, Feb. 7 at 2 p.m. at Evans Diamond.

Santa Clara  001  000  100  -   2  8  1
California   500  000  00   -   5  8  2
SC: Crudale (4), Perry and Chiaffredo, Cal: Vorhis (4), Steele (5), 
Sumner (7), Nickle and Hill. WP - Steele (2-0), LP - Crudale (0-1). 
HR: Cal, Gordnier (1).Notable: Hill 2-for-4, Garfin 2-for-4.