BASEBALL CONTINUES WAC ROAD SWING AT NEVADA
HORNETS CONTINUE WAC ROAD SWING AT NEVADA
After clinching a spot in the Western Athletic Conference Tournament this past weekend, the Hornets will continue their nine-game road trip with a four game series against Nevada.
The Wolf Pack are currently 28-19 overall and 15-9 in the WAC, good enough for second place, a game back of Fresno State, who the Hornets will play in their final series of the season.
Third baseman Jason Rodriguez leads the club in hitting, both overall (.392) and in WAC play (.400), while also pacing the team in home runs (8), and RBI (49). First baseman Shaun Kort, a preseason all-WAC selection, is batting .337 with four home runs and 48 RBI.
Preseason all-WAC reliever Mario Rivera has paced the Wolf Pack bullpen in WAC play, posting a 1-0 record with a 0.73 ERA, allowing just one earned run while recording a save. Chris Garcia has posted two saves during WAC play, but no Nevada pitcher has more than two saves on the season, with six players recording saves.
Live audio for all four games of the series will be available at hornetsports.com with J.D. Fox calling the action. Live Stats will also be available for the series.
BASEBALL SEES LEAD SLIP AWAY IN 8-7 LOSS TO HAWAI’I
The Sacramento State baseball team took a 7-5 lead into the bottom of the ninth, but failed to hold on, dropping an 8-7 decision to the Hawai’i Rainbows on Sunday, May 4 at Les Murakami Stadium.
The Hornets started the contest with a three-run first inning, with junior Gabe Jacobo driving in the first run on a sacrifice fly, sophomore Tim Wheeler connecting on a RBI single, and senior Wes Oberlin scoring an unearned run on a Rainbow error. Hawai’i came back to cut the deficit to one in the bottom half of the inning, as Jeffrey Van Doornum hit a two-run double, the only hit in the inning, to pull the Rainbows back to within 3-2.
The score remained that way until the top of the fourth, as junior Blake Crosby connected on a lead off single, and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by senior Travis Kirkman. Following a single by junior Hunter Martinez that advanced Crosby to third, Rainbow reliever Alex Capaul uncorked a wild pitch that scored Crosby and advanced Martinez into scoring position, crossing the plate on a RBI single by senior Ryan Blair, making the score 5-2 in favor of the Hornets.
That lead would hold until the bottom of the seventh, when the Rainbows pushed three runs across the board to tie the score at 5-5. Ryan Asato hit a two run home run to bring Hawai’i to within a run at 5-4, and then with one down Matt Roquemore and Greg Garcia hit back-to-back singles to put runners on first and third. Jonathan Hee then hit a ground ball to short, and beat out the throw to first to break up the double play, and tie the score at 5-5.
The Hornets fought back quickly, as they retook the lead in the top half of the eighth. Kirkman was hit by a pitch to start the inning, and was sacrificed to second on a bunt by Martinez. Blair then connected on a RBI single, scoring Kirkman to give the Hornets a 6-5 lead. Flores and Jacobo followed with singles, with Blair being thrown out at home for the second out of the inning on the Jacobo single. With runners on second and third and two out, Oberlin was intentionally walked, which brought up Wheeler, who took one for the team, earning an RBI after being hit by a pitch, making the score 7-5 in favor of the Hornets.
The Rainbows threatened in the bottom of the eighth, as the first two batters in the inning reached base, but Catricala stuck out looking and Asato hit into a 4-6-3 double play to end the inning. The Rainbows threatened again in the bottom of the ninth, as Landon Hernandez started the inning with a single, and advanced to second on a groundout. Garcia then followed with a RBI single, scoring pinch runner Kevin Fujii to pull the Rainbows to within a run at 7-6. Hee then singled, and following a infield fly pop out by Brandon Haislet, Van Doornum walked to load the bases. That brought up Kevin Macdonald, who connected on a single just over the head of second baseman Martinez, scoring Garcia and Hee to give Hawai’i the 8-7 victory.
Cory Kahn (3-2) picked up the win for the Rainbows, pitching a scoreless top of the ninth. Junior Jeff Roth (2-2) picked up the loss for the Hornets, allowing three runs on four hits over the final 2.1 innings of the ballgame.
Flores went 3-for-3 at the plate with a run scored, while Blair and Wheeler were both 2-for-4 with two RBI to pace Sacramento State. Martinez finished the game 3-for-5 at the plate, while senior Brian Boyd was 2-for-5. Asato, Catricala and Van Doornum each provided two RBI to lead the Rainbows.
HORNET HITTING STREAKS TOP THE WAC
Sacramento State hitters have produced the two longest hitting streaks in the Western Athletic Conference, as sophomore Tim Wheeler and senior Ryan Blair each reached 20 consecutive games of hitting safely. The duo are tied for fourth place in Hornet history for the longest hitting streak in a season.
The Hornets also boast the longest current streak in the WAC, as Gabe Jacobo has hit safely in 14 straight games. Jacobo also has the longest hitting streak within WAC play, having hit safely in 17 straight WAC contests.
D-FLO KNOWS RECORDS
Following his double in the Hornets victory over California on March 18, senior David Flores became the school’s all-time leader with 39 career doubles. He broke Chris Kinsey’s (2001-03) mark, which was 38, set in his three years in the Green and Gold. He has since added to his record, as his 22 doubles on the season give him 56 in his career, and also rank him first in the Western Athletic Conference and fourth in the country.
Flores leads the team in runs scored (43), while ranking second in hits (67), extra base hits (27), and total bases (104). He also ranks second in school history in hits (211), runs scored (118), and at bats (680), while ranking seventh in RBI (96). He is tied for first all-time in being hit by a pitch, with his next HBP giving him the school record with 37.
JACOBO SHOWING HIS VERSATILITY ON THE FIELD AND IN THE BATTERS BOX
Need a left-fielder? A first baseman? How about a leadoff man? During the 2008 season, Hornet junior Gabe Jacobo has done it all. Jacobo, who led the team with a .363 batting average and 14 home runs last season while playing first base, came to Sacramento State from Tulare Western HS as, of all things, a shortstop. This season, the native of Tulare, Calif. has started 25 games in left field, and 22 games at first base. He has hit in the cleanup spot in 45 of his 47 starts, with the biggest deviation coming in a game against San Jose State when he batted leadoff. Jacobo has shown power at the plate, with 12 home runs and a .683 slugging percentage, but also has a sacrifice bunt and a .443 on base percentage to his credit. Jacobo also has been a threat on the basepaths, stealing seven bases on eight attempts so far this season. For his career, Jacobo is 16-of-19 on stolen base chances, and now has 26 career home runs, placing fourth on the Hornets all-time charts. Jacobo also joined the Hornets 100 RBI club this past weekend, becoming just the sixth player to do so.
MR. SMITH GOES TO RECORD BOOKS
The Hornets 8-2 win over Hilo on Sunday, April 20 marked the 829th career victory for Sacramento State head coach John Smith, as he passed Hall of Fame volleyball coach Debby Colberg to become the winningest head coach in Hornet history in terms of total victories.
HORNET BATS LEADING THE WAC
Sacramento State has seen its team batting average rise to .313 for the season, which is now the leading mark in the Western Athletic Conference. The Hornets have all struck out fewer times than any other team in the conference, while leading the conference in stolen bases.
ROSTER CHANGES FROM MEDIA GUIDE
There have been four roster changes to the Hornets’ lineup that are not reflected in the media guide. Three Hornets have changed numbers from what is established on the media guide roster: Richard Walker changed from #27 to #6, Doug Stinson changed from #39 to #27, and Mike Weiss changed from #42 to #35. Tommy Elrod (#8) joined the team. These changes are denoted on the stats available within the release, as well as the roster found on page four.
TOMMY ELROD BIO
Note, Tommy Elrod’s bio is not found in the 2008 media guide, as he became an eligible member of the team after the guide had gone to press. His biographical information is found below.
#8, Tommy Elrod, Sophomore, LHP Modesto, Calif./Cal State L.A./Modesto Christian HS
Prior to Sacramento State, Elrod pitched one year at Cal State Los Angeles for coach Pat Shine.He led Cal State L.A. to the Division II Championship Finals in Montgomery, Ala, after earning NCAA West Regional All-Tournament honors for throwing a three-hit shutout in game one of the regional final against Mesa State, while striking out nine. Made 14 appearances for the Golden Eagles, including six starts, while posting a 4-0 record with a 4.46 ERA. He struck out 37 batters in 38.1 innings pitched. Was a 2006 graduate of Modesto Christian High School in Modesto, Calif...four year letterwinner in baseball for coach Kelly Wheelock. He was born May 27, 1988. His parents are Tom and Jodie Elrod. He is majoring in civil engineering.