SPOKANE, Wash.—The Gonzaga baseball team played the first of three games against local foe Washington State Monday night, beating the Cougars 9-4 at Patterson Baseball Complex & Washington Trust Field.
Gonzaga wasted no time in taking the lead, plating a pair of runs in the first inning. Left fielder Sam Brown began the frame with a single, and Tyler Frost added a double two batters later. Second baseman Justin Jacobs allowed Brown to score with a rip to right field, and Jeff Bohling followed up with an RBI grounder to plate Frost.
Two frames later, the Bulldogs sent all nine batters to the plate and scored four more runs. WSU relief pitcher Joe Rosenstein walked the bases loaded to begin the frame and then issued another to Jake Vieth for the first run. The Cougars then went back to the bullpen, and Jace VanDeBrake greeted the newly-minted Caleb McAlister with a single to center field, allowing the leading two runners to score. Gonzaga got another tally on a WSU throwing error for a 6-0 lead.
Washington State got its first run with its first hit – a double down the right-field line from James Rudkin in the fourth – but Gonzaga countered in the bottom of the frame with a sacrifice fly from Vieth.
Gonzaga starter Daniel Bies, meanwhile, kept the Cougar offense down into the seventh inning. The redshirt sophomore allowed just that fourth-inning run and four hits total on the night. He also benefited from a trio of nice defensive plays, seeing a home run pulled back by Daniel Fredrickson, getting a nice diving grab in foul territory from Bohling, and having a Cougar runner thrown out at home by Frost.
The Bulldog offense wasn’t done, adding runs in the sixth and seventh for a 9-1 lead. Southpaw Calvin LeBrun came on in relief of Bies in the seventh, inheriting a pair of runners but stranding them on base. He also pitched a shutout eighth inning before Washington State scored three in the ninth to put the game at its 9-4 final.
Bies got the win, his second of 2017, and LeBrun earned his third save in the effective three-inning outing. Cougar starter Isaac Mullins took the loss, his first of the season.