UW 5, Cal 4

SEATTLE - Joey Lind singled home Matt Stevens with the eventual winning run and Matt Hague homered and had four hits as the Huskies ended the regular season on a positive note with a 5-4 win over California in the rubber game of a three game Pac-10 series at Husky Ballpark.

With the win the Huskies took the series two games to one and finished the season 29-27 and 11-13 in the Pac-10, good for fifth place, while the Bears finished 29-26 and fourth in the conference with a 12-12 mark.

The Huskies trailed 4-3 going into the bottom of the eighth inning with closer Matt Gorgen on the mound for the Bears. Gorgen retired leadoff batter Bradley Boyer on a tapper back to the mound, but then Hague hit his 13th home run of the season to tie the game. Upon contact, it appeared as if Hague just hit a lazy fly ball that right fielder Blake Smith would catch for the second out, but the ball carried until it cleared the wall.

The home run ignited the Huskies, as Ty Rasmussen lined a single to center. Stevens pinch ran and then the crowd rose to its feet, applauding and exhorting senior Curt Rindal as he came to the plate for his final at-bat as a Husky. He came through for his team and the fans, lining the first pitch from Gorgen to left for a single, with Stevens taking second. Lind pinch hit for Trevor Petersen and singled to left, scoring Stevens, who beat Ryan Hanlon's throw to the plate rather easily.

In the ninth, Husky closer Nick Hagadone finished four and two thirds innings of two hit relief by setting down the Bears in order. He earned the win to improve to 6-1. He did not walk a batter and struck out three.

Gorgen took the loss for the Bears to drop to 3-5. He gave up two runs, both earned, on four hits and one walk in two innings. He struck out two.

The Bears got on the board first with a run in the top of the first. Brett Jackson got hit by a pitch from Brandon McKerney and advanced to second on a single by Charlie Cutler. After Josh Satin grounded into a fielder's choice force out at second, David Cooper singled to right center to score Jackson.

The Huskies went ahead 2-1 with a pair of runs in the bottom of the second. Brett Kaluza led off with a infield chop single, moved to second on a sacrifice by Brett Wilcox and scored on a soft line single to left by Boyer. Hague then lined the first pitch from starter Craig Bennigson off the left field bullpen wall for a double to score Boyer from first.

Hague gave the Huskies a 3-1 lead in the bottom of the fourth with his third hit in as many at bats, a single that scored Michael Burgher from second. Hague came within a triple of hitting for the cycle, and may have had it except for a fantastic diving catch by Jackson on a ball into the gap in right center.

California rallied to take a 4-3 lead with three runs in the top of the fifth. With one out, Michael Brady doubled to left and took third on an error by Brian Pearl. McKerney hit Jackson with a pitch for the second time in the game and walked Cutler to load the bases. Husky head coach Ken Knutson brought Hagadone in to relieve McKerney. On the first pitch to Satin Hagadone uncorked a wild pitch, allowing Brady to score to make it 3-2 Huskies. Satin took a called strike but then grounded a single to right to plate Jackson and Cutler and put the Bears on top.

Prior to the game the Huskies honored departing seniors Rindal and Johnny DuRocher. Rindal went 1 for 4 with a walk in his final home game. He finished the season with a .348 batting average on a team leading 78 hits in 224 at-bats. He led the Huskies with 21 doubles and 50 runs batted in. He also finished tied with Rasmussen for second place in home runs with 10, behind only Hague's 13 long balls.


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