Number 423 for Coach Knutson

Tim Lincecum pitched eight shutout innings as the 13th ranked Huskies defeated the Bruins 7-2 in the middle game of a Pac-10 series on Saturday afternoon at Husky Ballpark. They also gave head coach Ken Knutson the all-time Husky career coaching record with 423 wins, breaking the previous record of 422 held by Bob MacDonald.

The Huskies improved to 34-17-1 and more importantly, with a 15-8 mark, moved closer to their first Pac-10 title since 1998. They maintained a half game lead over top ranked Stanford (13-7), which defeated USC 5-4 at Sunken Diamond in Palo Alto. The Bruins dropped to 11-9 in the Pac-10 and 30-26 overall.

Lincecum improved his record to 9-2, giving up seven hits and three walks. He struck out only seven, well below his 13.3 strikeout per nine inning ratio, but twice kept the Bruins off the scoreboard when they had runners on at third base. In the third, Chris Denove led off with a double and advanced to third on a sacrifice by Mike Svetlic, but Lincecum struck out Jarrad Page swinging and then retired Preston Griffin on a fly ball to right field. Then in the sixth the Bruins had the bases loaded with two outs on a pair of walks and a single by Matt Thayer, but Denove flied out to left field to end the inning.

David Johnson started on the mound for the Bruins and suffered the loss to drop to 2-3, giving up five runs on five hits and three walks in five innings, with six strikeouts.

When the game began after an hour and 33 minute rain delay, the Huskies took a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the first. Greg Isaacson walked with one out and scored when Aaron Hathaway drove the first pitch he saw from Bruin starter David Johnson off the wall in dead center field. Kyle Larsen then plated Hathaway with a ground out to first.

The Huskies made it 3-0 in the fifth when Brent Lillibridge hit his 10th home run of the season, a fly ball over the left field wall between the flag pole and second light post, and then gave Lincecum a 7-0 cushion and broke the game open with four runs in the bottom of the sixth. Hathaway lined a single to left field and Larsen walked, prompting Bruin coach Gary Adams to go to the bullpen and bring in right hander Kevin Brophy. The Huskies greeted Brophy with back to back home runs.

Zach Clem drilled a 2-0 pitch over the wall in left field for his 13th of the season, an almost identical shot to Lillibridge's an inning earlier, and then Matt Lane followed with his fifth, a shot just barely over the wall on the right field side of the center field screen.

UCLA got to Husky reliever Richie Lentz for two runs in the ninth. Brandon Averill flared a single to right and pinch hitter Will Penniall grounded a single to center. Then Page took Lentz deep to center for what would have been his fourth home run of the season, but he passed Penniall rounding first base and got called out by first base umpire Kevin Daugherty. Averill and Penniall still came into score, with Page receiving credit for a two run single.

Lentz then got Griffin to ground out to shortstop Nick Batkoski for the final out of the game, and moments later the Huskies congratulated coach Knutson on win number 423 with a Gatorade shower.

The two teams return to Husky Ballpark at 1 PM Sunday afternoon for the rubber match of the three-game series, also the Huskies' final Pac-10 game of the season. Matt Kasser (3-0, 6.65) takes the ball for the Huskies and Wes Whisler (2-4, 5.33) for the Bruins. Top Stories