Bats Stay Hot As Card Handle Cougs

Behind two home runs from All-American second baseman Jed Lowrie, the Stanford Cardinal smoked the Washington State Cougars by an 11-4 score on Saturday afternoon. Lowrie finished the day with three hits total as the Cardinal recorded their second straight double-digit run total in this series. Meanwhile on the mound, Jeff Gilmore picked up his fifth win of the season.

Much like last night, the Cardinal hitters got to the Washington State starting pitcher early and often for a big lead.  Wayne Daman, with his stellar 3.02 ERA, got the start on the mound, but didn't last past the fourth inning.  Stanford took an immediate 1-0 lead in the top of the first when All-American second baseman Jed Lowrie belted a home run to right field - his ninth roundtripper of the season.

Then with the game tied 1-1, the Cardinal erupted for three runs in the third and then three more in the fourth inning to take a commanding 7-1 lead.  In the top of the third inning, it was some clutch two-out hitting that brought home all of the runs.  With Adam Sorgi at first base and two down, Lowrie singled to put a couple of runners on.  John Mayberry, Jr. then rifled a line drive double down the left field plating both runners.  Mayberry would immediately come home to score when the following hitter, John Hester, reached on a single.

In the fourth, Stanford knocked out Daman when Chris Lewis and Sorgi supplied big RBI hits.  With Michael Taylor at second and one out, Lewis singled into right field for a 5-1 Stanford advantage.  Then two batters later, Sorgi hammered a double to deep left center extending the lead out to 7-1 and knocking Daman out of the game.

Meanwhile, Jeff Gilmore wasn't at his best, but he was getting the job done through the first five innings.  Gilmore allowed a single run in the bottom of the first on a Jim Murphy two-out RBI single, but then put up four consecutive zeros on the scoreboard as the Cardinal built their lead.  Gilmore continued to display excellent control with no walks during those four frames as that allowed him to pitch around the four hits he surrendered. 

Stanford extended the lead out to 9-1 with two runs off WSU reliever Dane Renkert in the top of the sixth.  Lewis led off by drawing a walk and then a Rapoport single put runners at first and second.  After Sorgi sacrificed the runners over with a bunt, Chris Minaker brought home Lewis with an RBI ground out.  Rapoport would score later in the play on a throwing error from the first baseman Murphy who was trying to nail Rapoport as he moved up to third.

The Cougars were finally able to string a few hits together against Gilmore in the bottom of the sixth to knock out the junior right-hander.  After two quick outs, a single and a double scored a run to make it 9-2.  After another a single and a walk loaded the bases, #2 hitter Jason Freeman grounded a single up the middle plating two more and all of a sudden, it was a 9-4 game.  That ended Gilmore's afternoon as Matt Manship was summoned from the bullpen.  Manship issued a walk to the first batter he faced which reloaded the bases, but the veteran hurler settled down to retire cleanup hitter Brady Everett on a line out to third leaving three runners on and preserving the 9-4 Stanford lead.

Manship came back out in the seventh and worked a scoreless frame as he pitched around a one-out single.  Sophomore Blake Holler relieved Manship to start the eighth and promptly worked a 1-2-3 inning.  Then Stanford added a pair of runs in the top of the ninth when Lowrie smoked a two-run homer to deep right field as the second baseman reached double figures in the home run category for the year. 

Holler completed the game in the bottom of the ninth inducing Everett to ground into a 6-4-3 double play to seal the victory.  For Stanford, it was yet another errorless game in the field as they clinched the series victory.

Game Notes:
* Seven of the nine hitters in the Cardinal starting lineup recorded hits this afternoon.  Leading the way was Lowrie with a 3-for-5, 2 HR, 3 RBI performance.  Lowrie is now hitting .340 on the season with a whopping ten home runs and 35 RBI.  Lowrie had 17 homers and 68 RBI last season (led the Pac-10 in both categories) and he's on pace to surpass both of those figures here in 2005.

* Other multi-hit games came from Sorgi (2-for-4, 2B, 2 RBI), Mayberry, Jr. (2-for-5, 2B, 2 RBI), and Hester (2-for-5, RBI).

* Gilmore picked up the win with 5 2/3 innings of work.  He allowed four runs on a season-high ten hits with two walks and one strike out. 

* Manship (1 1/3 IP, 1 H) and Holler (2 IP, 1 H) combined for 3 1/3 scoreless innings out of the bullpen to end the game.

* Stanford scored in double figures in runs for the second straight game.  That is the first time they've accomplished that feat this season.

* Stanford has won 22 consecutive games over Washington State and is a perfect 20-0 against the Cougars since the Pac-10 merger in 1999.

Stanford          1 0 3  3 0 2  0 0 2   -   11  12   0
Washington State  1 0 0  0 0 3  0 0 0   -    4  12   2

WP: Jeff Gilmore (5-1)
LP: Wayne Daman (4-2)

HR: Stanford - Jed Lowrie 2 (9, 10)

Records: #12 Stanford (16-9, 2-0), Washington State (15-16, 0-5)

* The Cardinal and Cougars will conclude this series tomorrow afternoon.  First pitch is scheduled for 12:00pm.

The Bootleg Top Stories