Baseball Weekend Roundup

Stanford continued to play well at home as they took 2-of-3 from rival California last weekend in a non-conference series. In this week's Roundup, check out all of the latest results from around the Pac-10 plus an updated "Super Sixteen" national ranking.

Pac-10 Standings (overall records through games of Sun. 3/6)

Oregon State        11-2
Arizona             12-5
California          11-6
USC                  7-4
Stanford            11-7
Washington State    10-8
Washington           8-7
Arizona State       11-10
UCLA                 7-9

The Pac-10 continues to prove they are one of the top two or three conferences in the country.  Arizona State, the preseason #9 team in the country, looks to have turned their season around after a rough start.  The Sun Devils won a series over top-ten Baylor two weeks ago and then went a perfect 3-0 last weekend at a round-robin tournament in Greenville, North Carolina.  The wins came over Ohio State, a strong East Carolina team, and the 6th ranked North Carolina Tar Heels.  The strong weekend has ASU finally back over .500.

Meanwhile, Washington also appears to have their early-season struggles behind them.  The preseason #8 team in the country, like ASU, the Huskies have fallen completely out of the top 25.  That may be changing soon as Washington went a perfect 4-0 last week including a convincing home sweep of UC Santa Barbara.  The Huskies are back over .500 and knocking on the door for a return to the national top 25.

The two other preseason favorites also continue to show they belong among the best in the country.  Stanford cooled off a previously red-hot California team (who entered the series with a nine-game winning streak) by taking 2-of-3 in a non-conference series.  Arizona dropped 2-of-3 at home to 2nd ranked Texas, but they did hand the Longhorns their first defeat of the season while the two losses were each by one run (how good has Texas been in these close games versus the Pac-10 elite, by the way?).

Oregon State finally lost a game last weekend, but still managed an impressive 2-of-3 home series win over surging UC Riverside (remember, the Highlanders won a series at Arizona the previous weekend).  The Beavers continue to boast the top non-conference record in the Pac-10.

USC broke even last week with a 2-2 record.  After a 21-8 midweek rout of UC Riverside, the Trojans went 1-2 at a very competitive round-robin tournament in Round Rock, Texas.  SC dropped single games to #12 Rice and #15 Texas A&M while winning a contest versus Nebraska.  The Trojans are probably playing the toughest schedule in the country and thus far have been able to handle it well.

The only two teams in the conference that don't appear to have what it takes to make a run to the NCAA Tournament are UCLA and Washington State.  The Bruins dropped under .500 after getting absolutely pounded at Fullerton's tournament (convincing losses to Oklahoma, Nevada, and the Titans).  The Cougars are 10-8, but against a horrible schedule.  WSU dropped a game to Utah Valley State over the weekend.

Stanford and Washington have the upcoming weekend off for final exams, but there's still plenty of important non-conference action taking place.  Arizona State tries to keep their recent strong play going as they battle 5th ranked LSU in a shortened two-game series in Baton Rouge.  Arizona hosts unbeaten (but unranked) Mississippi State in Tucson.  USC's brutal schedule continues as they host a round-robin tournament with matchups against #22 Texas Tech, Wichita State, and UC Irvine.

Oregon State plays in a round-robin tournament down in Pepperdine (Northridge, Winthrop, and the Waves are the opponents).  California hosts UNLV in a three-game series while the Bruins figure to have their hands full with a weekend tilt at now-9th ranked Texas A&M.

"Super Sixteen"

                         Record   Pvs.
1. Texas                  17-1     1
* Longhorns no longer perfect, but they did notch big 2-of-3 series win at Arizona.

2. Cal State Fullerton    11-2     2
* Titans just hammering the opposition ... perfect 4-0 week (SDSU, Nevada, Oklahoma, UCLA) winning by a combined margin of 44-12.

3. South Carolina         12-1     3
* Gamecocks post a 2-1 record at Minnesota's round-robin tournament (wins over Minnesota, New Orleans, and a loss to Pepperdine).

4. Tulane                 13-1     4
* Green Wave sweep visiting Marist in three-game series.

5. Miami                  13-4     6
* Hurricanes take 2-of-3 from N.C. State in their first ACC series.

6. Stanford               11-7     8
* Cardinal with a 2-of-3 series win over rival California.

7. LSU                    11-3     5
* Tigers drop midweek game to Centenary and then win 2-of-3 over visiting UAB over the weekend.

8. Georgia                 7-3     7
* Bulldogs break even at 2-2 (wins over Georgia State, Ohio State and losses to Michigan and East Carolina).

9. Florida                11-3     9
* Gators post 2-of-3 series win over visiting Villanova.

10. Mississippi            9-3    10
* Rebels split two-game midweek series with Northwestern State and then easily sweep Purdue over the weekend.

11. Arizona               12-5    11
* Wildcats lose 2-of-3 at home to Texas.

12. Florida State         19-1    13
* Seminoles with a gaudy record, but they continue to play cupcakes ... swept four-game series from Hawaii-Hilo last weekend.

13. Arkansas              12-1    14
* Hogs continue strong early-season play with sweep of Illinois-Chicago.

14. Rice                  12-3    15
* Owls with a good week going 2-1 (defeat Lamar and USC with a loss to Nebraska).

15. Texas A&M             12-4    16
* Aggies sweep through round-robin tournament with wins over USC, Notre Dame, and Texas State.

16. North Carolina         9-3    12
* Tar Heels fall back after losing three one-run games at a tournament (Arizona State, Ohio State, and Michigan).

Dropped Out: none

Baseball America

Stanford remained at #11 in this week's Baseball America Top 25 poll.  The Cardinal are the highest ranked Pac-10 team with Arizona (#12), Oregon State (#23), and USC (#25) also making the cut.

Texas (#2) and Cal State Fullerton (#3) continue to boast lofty rankings.  The national series of the week pits the Titans at top-ranked Tulane for a three-game set.

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