Southpaw Joe Pistorese continues stretch of dominance at home by taming No. 24 USC

Joe Pistorese hurled another gem at Bailey-Brayton Field as the Cougs upset No. 24 USC 5-2

Pistoresejoe2014action-11
The Washington State Baseball team defeated No. 24 USC Friday Night at Bailey-Brayton field 5-2. Winning on Friday has become a habit for the Cougs over the past several weeks. Since April 4th, the Cougs have gone 4-1 on Friday nights and 3-8 in games played on all other nights of the week. The secret to the Cougars' recent Friday night success has been the establishment of southpaw Joe Pistorese as the series opening starting pitcher.

Pistorese has been especially dominant at home. In Friday's game, he fell one out short of pitching his third straight complete game at Bailey-Brayton.In his previous two home starts,Pistorese became the first Cougar pitcher to throw a complete game shutout since 1995 as WSU knocked of Cal 3-0 and he followed that up by leading the Cougs to a 4-1 victory of No. 5 Oregon State and Major League prospect Ben Wetzler.

What made Friday's victory all the more impressive is that Pistorese got off to a rough start. The first two Trojan batters were able to reach base with a single and a walk and came around to score. The Cougs answered with two runs of their own in the bottom of second inning on a pair of RBI singles from Ian Sagdal and Collin Slaybaugh.

In the bottom of the fifth, WSU almost got something started when Nick Tanielu was hit by a pitch with one out. The next two batters, PJ Jones and Ben Roberts, would each single. But, the reckless baserunning that has plagued the Cougs all season long rared its ugly head on each hit as both Tanielu and Jones were thrown out trying to go to from first to third.

The big inning for WSU finally came in the bottom of the seventh. Slaybaugh continued his hot hitting by leading off the inning with a triple. After Trek Stemp failed to move Slaybaugh over and Yale Rosen was walked, Tanielu came to the plate and hammered a double in the right field alley scoring Slaybaugh and advancing Rosen to third for what would be the game winning RBI. Jones then came to the plate and added some insurance for the Cougs with a two run RBI single that scored Rosen and Slaybaugh.

Pistorese continued to roll into the ninth before surrendering a two out slap double down the right field line to USC's Jake Hernandez. With the double, Hernandez was the only Trojan to collect multiple hits off of Pistorese. At that point, pitching coach Gregg Swenson, who served his final game as the interim head coach while Donnie Marbut has been suspended, opted to go to freshman closer Ian Hamilton. Pistorese was visibly upset about being pulled, but the end result was good as Hamilton was able to get the first batter he faced out on a routine 4-3 groundball to end the game and record his 12th save of the season, tying the school record.

The win lifted WSU to 19-22 on the season and 9-10 in Pac-12 play. The Cougs and Trojans will square off again at Bailey-Brayton on Saturday for a scheduled 2 pm opening pitch.

Photo credit: WSU Athletic Communications

BASEBALL

Pistorese Pitches Cougars Past Trojans - Washington State University Official Athletic Site
Washington State knocks off No. 24 USC.

VOLLEYBALL

One WSU program that has me excited for the coming year is the Volleyball team. Former Cougar standout Jen (Stinson) Greeny and husband Burdette seem to have the Cougs headed in the right direction with a highly ranked recruiting class that will be entering their sophomore campaign next season.  That class features Kyra Holt, who garnered All Pac-12 honors as a freshman. Earlier in the week, the program announced the addition of Ashley Vander Tuig, a 6-2 outside hitter from Tulare, CA, and Arlicia Ortiz, a 5-4 defensive specialist from Spanaway, WA for the 2014 class.

Volleyball Adds Talented Duo to 2014 Team - Washington State University Official Athletic Site
Cougars Head Coach Jen Greeny announced the additions of Ashley Vander Tuig, a 6-2 middle blocker from Tulare, Calif., and Arlicia Ortiz, a 5-4 defensive specialist from Spanaway, Wash., to the Washington State University volleyball team for the Fall 2014 season.

ROWING

Start Time Changed for Saturday’s Regatta - Washington State University Official Athletic Site
The WSU women's rowing team's home regatta against Oregon State, Saturday, May 3, will begin an hour earlier than originally scheduled, starting at 8 a.m. at Wawawai Landing on the Snake River.

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