No. 15 USC Can't Get the Bats Going Behind Davis' Gem, Drop Game 1 of NCAA Regional to No. 22 Virginia, 6-1|
May 29, 2015
LAKE ELSINORE, Calif. - Despite a no-hitter by USC starter Kyle Davis through six innings, the No. 2 seeded Trojans dropped game one of the Lake Elsinore Regional to No. 3 seed Virginia, 6-1 at The Diamond on Friday afternoon.
The Trojans (37-20) were unable to get the bats going, in their 41st regional all-time (first since 2005), with Garrett Stubbs (Del Mar, Calif./Torrey Pines HS) and Jeremy Martinez (Fountain Valley, Calif./Mater Dei HS) combined for four of the Trojans' five hits, with Martinez driving in Stubbs to score the long run in the eighth inning.
Junior starter Kyle Davis (Garden Grove, Calif./Pacifica HS) was outstanding and had a no-hitter going through six. It was the longest a Trojan pitcher had held a no-hitter since Rik Currier threw a no-hitter in a five-inning, rain-shortened game in 2000 vs. Mississippi State.
However, the Cavaliers (35-22) got to Davis in the seventh inning, with three runs coming around to score. The first runner reached on an error by the third baseman to keep the no-hitter alive, but it changed the complex of the inning as the next batter singled to left field to put two on with nobody down. A sac bunt advanced the runners 90 feet and then a ground out by Robbie Coman allowed the first run to score. Towns then came home on a wild pitch, but it didn't matter much as the hitter at the plate, Joe McCarthy singled up the middle that would have scored the run.
"The game ended up being two defensive plays, explained head coach Dan Hubbs. "To lead off the seventh, we got caught surprised by that ball that came to third base. We had two routine plays that we didn't make, including that pop-up in the ninth that scored two runs. I think that seventh inning, with the way Kyle was throwing, goes a little bit different if we make that play on the grounder."
With the score 2-0, the Hoos added one more in the top of the eighth and then broke things open with three in the ninth. All six runs (only four earned) were charged to Davis, although Tyler Gilbert (Felton, Calif./Santa Barbara City College) entered in the top of the ninth with a runner on second and two down and gave up one hit to bring in the final run of the day, before getting the final out of the inning. Davis' final line was 8.2 innings, allowing six runs (three earned) on seven hits, with two walks and two strikeouts.
The Trojans had their opportunities, but couldn't come through, including having two on with one down in the top of the first and again in the sixth inning. Hoos' starter Connor Jones was equally as outstanding as he scattered five hits through 7.2 innings, allowing only one run on two walks with four strikeouts. After giving up hits in the first, he did not allow another Trojan hit until the fifth inning.
"We had a couple opportunities and we didn't make the best of it, said Hubbs. "They had a couple of opportunities and they capitalized on them, that was the difference of the game."
The Trojans will regroup and will face the loser of tonight's contest between No. 1 seed UC Santa Barbara and No. 4 seed San Diego State tomorrow (Saturday) at 3 p.m. PT.