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Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

Trojans Complete Oakland Sweep, Move To 8-0

Carly Fasciglione |
February 22, 2015 | 11:39 p.m. PST

Staff Reporter

Timmy Robinson had another RBI to pace the Trojans' active offense (Charlie Magovern/Neon Tommy).
Timmy Robinson had another RBI to pace the Trojans' active offense (Charlie Magovern/Neon Tommy).
The Trojans (8-0) just keep on rolling, even through some rare Southern Californian rain. The team swept their season series against the Oakland Golden Grizzlies (0-6) and remain the lone undefeated Pac-12 team with a 7-3 win Sunday afternoon.

Freshman Mitch Hart got his first start and win Sunday. Hart got off to bit of a shaky start, as he had trouble putting batters away in the first couple of innnings. Hart didn’t have a 1-2-3 inning until his sixth and final inning. Hart’s pitch count rose quickly, but he managed to hold the Grizzlies to only two runs in six innings. He gave up only five hits and struck out four after 25 batters faced.

When asked about Hart’s first performance, head coach Dan Hubbs responded: “He was a little rough early in terms of making pitches in some spots, but I thought he settled down in the last four innings that he threw it… but for his first start I was real pleased with him."

After Grizzlies right fielder Tyler Pagano tripled to right field and drove home two runs in the top of the second, the Trojans offense fired back quickly. Sophomore shortstop Reggie Southall earned two RBIs thanks to an error from the Grizzlies second baseman. Junior first baseman AJ Ramirez got his first RBI of the game and senior left fielder Garrett Stubbs singled another runner in directly after to give USC a 4-2 lead.

READ MORE: Trojans Gallop Over The Grizzlies

Hart did a nice job of maintaining the lead after the Trojans' big second inning and struck out two batters in the top of the fourth with some nice off-speed pitches. Ramirez secured his first home run of the season off of the first pitch in the bottom of the fourth, and now leads the team in RBIs with 11 on the season.

The Trojans' offensive output wasn’t all luck, though. Every player on the starting lineup had at least one hit, giving the team a total of 13 by the end of the night. Coach Hubbs was more than pleased with the team’s thorough performance.

“One thing we’re priding ourselves on is not having to rely on one person… I think it’s integral for us that we have different guys doing different things,” he commented.

The team collected three walks, six RBIs, and only had three strikeouts while the Grizzlies were struck out seven times and only had three RBIs. They also stole another four bases, two of them coming from junior center fielder Timmy Robinson. 

The team has made a note to be more aggressive on the base paths, and the results have been clearly evident.

READ MORE: Bernardo Flores Leads Trojans Comeback In Oakland Opener

“I like the action because that gets the other team’s jumpy and then they're gonna have to pick off… it’s a pretty aggressive style and I’m excited to see what we’re gonna do,” Ramirez said of their new approach.

In the middle of the eighth, the drizzle turned into a heavy rain and the game was delayed for almost two and a half hours, an rare occurrence in sunny Southern California. Even with the delay, the team stayed focused and sophomore relief pitcher Jeff Paschke finished off the game maintaining that four-run lead.

Coach Hubbs made sure to keep the players focused and prepared throughout the delay. “One of the messages I had for them was you never know how long a rain delay is gonna be. Mentally, you gotta be prepared for whenever they tell you to play,” he said. 

The Trojans play their next game at Fresno State (3-4) on Tuesday and hope to maintain their high-level of play and impressive winning streak.

Reach Staff Reporter Carly Fasciglione here. 



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