April 3, 2011
Catccer Chadd Krist slammed his first home run of the season to help the No. 13 California Golden Bears defeat the USC Trojans 9-6 in the series finale on Sunday. The Bears will be back in action on Tuesday April 5 when they host the Pacific Tigers at 2:30 p.m. at Evans Diamond.
Trailing 4-2 in the bottom on the fifth, Cal got back-to-back one-out singles from junior short stop Marcus Semien and sophomore second baseman Tony Renda to put runners on the corners with junior catcher Chadd Krist at the plate. Krist smoked a double down the left field line, into the corner to score both runners to tie the game. The Bears again had runners on the corners, with Krist making his way to third and sophomore third baseman Mitch Delfino reaching on an error that extended the inning, when sophomore center fielder Darrel Matthews hit a ball in almost the exact same location as Krist's double, clearing the bases again and giving Cal a 6-4 lead. They would never again trail in the game.
Krist added another big run in to start the seventh inning, a towering homer to left that answered a homer hit by the Trojan's Ricky Oropesa in the top half of the inning. The Bears added two more runs in the seventh on another double down the left field line, this one off the bat of senior left fielder Austin Booker.
The Bears held what looked like a secure four-run lead going into the ninth. After two batters singled, putting runners on first and second, a pop up to the outfield looked like the final out of the game. When the wind took hold of it, the ball landed between the two Cal outfielders, giving USC a run and bringing the tying run to the plate. Junior right-hander Matt Flemer induced a ground out to short to secure the victory.
"USC played us as tough as anyone has all year," said head coach David Esquer. "They played aggressively. They were fearless offensively. All the squeeze plays, the slashing. They kept us on our toes. Credit to them, they executed quite a bit. Even in the ninth inning, on the fly ball that should have ended the game. I was smart enough to know they weren't going to give us three up, three down in the ninth."
Cal's bullpen worked 4.2 innings, with freshman left-hander Kyle Porter getting the win in relief. Porter worked 2.0 innings, allowing one run and three hits. Senior right-hander Kevin Miller, who started Tuesday's game at USF, worked 1.2 scoreless innings, adding another two strikeouts to his tally, giving him 17 this week. Junior right-hander Dixon Anderson, the starter, got a no decision, allowing four runs on seven hits in 4.1 innings of work.
Krist was 2-for-5 with 3 RBI. His home run was his first of the season. He added to his Pac-10-leading doubles tally with his 14th of the season.
"That pitcher had been pitching me in all day," said Krist of his double. "He is a tough sinker-ball pitcher. I just put a barrel on one and it got down the line, which was awesome."
Matthews went 2-for-3 with three runs driven in.
With the victory, Cal improves to 19-6 (5-1 Pac-10). USC falls to 10-18 (2-4 Pac-10). Cal takes the series 2-1. They have won six of their last seven games against USC, the first time the Bears have done that since 1985-86. Overall, the Bears are winners of 13 of their last 15 games.
The Bears will be back at Evans Diamond on Tuesday, April 5 when they host the Pacific Tigers at 2:30 p.m. The Bears will then head out on the road with back-to-back Pac-10 road series. They begin on Friday, April 8 at Arizona.