Aztecs Host No. 6 Oregon State in Home Opener
Feb. 21, 2013
San Diego State opens its 2013 home season with four home contests against No. 6 Oregon State this week. The opener of that series scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 15, when the Beavers visit Tony Gwynn Stadium for a 6:00 p.m. contest. The teams will also meet in single games on Thursday (Feb. 21 at 6:00 p.m.), Friday (Feb. 22 at 1:00 p.m.) and Sunday (Feb. 23 at noon).
AZTECS ON THE AIR
Both Thursday and Sunday's contests against Oregon State will be broadcast on the radio live by XTRA 1360 AM with Chris Ello and Ben Higgins calling the action. Friday's contest will be an Internet-only broadcast with Jack Cronin calling the play-by-play. All three broadcasts can be accessed at SDSU's baseball web site (www.GoAztecs.com).
Oregon State leads the series with SDSU 7-6-1 since the teams first met during the 1973 season. OSU had won the last three meetings (2001, 2003, 2008) before SDSU was victorious in San Diego last season. The last two contests between the teams have been one-sided affairs as the Beavers won in 2008 by the score of 22-3 and the Aztecs won last season's contest 18-2. The Aztecs are 5-2-1 at home and 1-5 away against the Beavers at neutral sites. The teams have never played each other at Oregon State's home field.
San Diego State began its 2012 campaign by sweeping a three-game series at 12th-ranked University of San Diego last weekend. It marked the first time the Aztecs opened a season with three straight wins since 1989. It was also SDSU's first three-game road sweep to begin a season. San Diego State was honored as the West Region Team of the Week by CollegeBaseballInsider.com.
Second baseman Tim Zier was named the Mountain West Player of the Week for his performance in the series at USD last weekend. Zier hit .429 (6-of-14) for the weekend with two doubles and seven RBI as the Aztecs swept No. 12 San Diego in a three-game series to open the season. The Aztecs made it a sweep of the weekly conference awards with Bubba Derby being named Mountain West Pitch of the Week this past Monday. The freshman from Monrovia, Calif., earned two saves in the three-game series with nationally-ranked San Diego. In addition, after his stellar weekend at USD, Tim Zier was named the College Sports Madness Mountain West Player of the Week and was also cited as a Primetime Performer by CollegeBaseball360.com.
After beginning the year with the three-game sweep of No. 12 University of San Diego, San Diego State has jumped into the national polls and is ranked 22nd this week by Collegiate Baseball. The Aztecs are also receiving votes in the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA) and the Perfect Game College Top 25 national polls.
ALLEN ON THE OFFENSIVE
Sophomore center fielder Greg Allen hit .538 during the three- games at USD on opening weekend. He began the series with four hits and scored once in the 8-1 win over the Toreros. In game two he recorded three hits including a double to start the game and score three runs in the 4-2 victory. He finished the weekend with a .571 on-base percentage and added a pair of stolen bases.
Senior Ethan Miller made an impressive season debut in game two of the three-game series at USD during opening weekend. With SDSU holding a one-run lead, he was called into the contest in the fourth with runners at first and second and one out. He proceeded to get a fly out and a ground out to end the threat and preserve the Aztecs' lead. Miller went on to toss a total of 4.2 innings during which he allowed a run on three hits with no walks and six strikeouts as he picked up the win.
Catcher Brad Haynal made a triumphant return to the lineup after missing the 2012 campaign with a broken leg. He served as the Aztecs' designated hitter in each game at USD last weekend. In the opener he recorded a pair of doubles, a triple and two RBI with a run scored and a stolen base. He batted .308 for the weekend, adding a double, RBI and run scored over the ensuing two contests.
ON THE DEFENSIVE
Over its three games at University of San Diego last weekend, San Diego State committed only one error and finished the weekend with a .991 fielding percentage. The team's lone miscue was on a pickoff attempt to first that skipped by the Aztec first baseman. An out was recorded on that play, however, when the runner tried to advance to third and was cut down.
Sophomore second baseman Tim Zier and catcher Brad Haynal hit safely in every game of the season-opening series at USD. Zier extended his current hitting streak to eight games after finishing the 2012 campaign with a five-game streak. Zier had a team-high 21 game streak during the 2012 campaign that was the longest by an Aztec since Quintin Berry (now with the Detroit Tigers) had a 27-game streak in 2005.
Outfielder Avondre Bollar hit his first collegiate triple during the series finale at USD last Sunday. The hit drove in SDSU's fourth run of the game in a 5-3 victory ... Freshman third baseman Tyler France had a pair of two-hit games (including a double) during the series at USD ... First baseman Ryan Muno suffered a broken hand during practice this week and is expected to miss 4-6 weeks. Muno went 4-for-13 (.308) during the opening weekend of the season ... The Aztecs turned five double plays over the three games at USD while hitting into just two ... Catcher Jake Romanski threw out three of the five runners trying to steal against him last weekend.