May 22, 2005
PULLMAN, Wash. - Sophomore lefty Brian Schroeder made the most of his first start in well over a month, tossing a six-hit, complete game gem against Washington State as UCLA defeated the Cougars 4-1 and captured its first conference series victory of the season Sunday afternoon at Bailey-Brayton Field. Schroeder allowed just one run and posted his first career complete game in just his third start of the season and his career. He notched new career highs in innings pitched and strikeouts with six.
UCLA improves to 15-37 and 4-17 in Pac-10 play. Washington State, playing its final home game of the year, falls to 21-33 and 1-20 in conference action.
Junior Brett McMillan was 2-for-4 with an RBI for UCLA and catcher Chris Denove threw out another base runner, making him 3-for-4 in throwing out runners this weekend. After laying down a season high four sacrifice bunts on Friday, the Bruins executed flawlessly again, totaling two more sacrifice hits and two run-scoring sac flies.
For the 18th time this season, the Bruins put a run on the board in the first inning. The run was a gift from the Cougars, however, as leadoff hitter Josh Roenicke scored after reaching on an error, advancing to second on a walk to right fielder Chris Jensen, advancing to third on a wild pitch and then scoring on first baseman Brett McMillan's RBI groundout.
Three innings later, after UCLA wasted a two-on, one-out scoring opportunity in the top of the fourth, WSU catcher Brady Everett hit his 15th home run of the year over the right field wall to tie the game at 1-1. Later in the fourth, Schroeder escaped further damage by striking out right fielder Kaeo Rubin with runners on the corners.
UCLA wasted no time retaking the lead in the top of the fifth, again using the Cougars' help. A lead off walk to third baseman Eric Taylor, Jr. and Roenicke's single up the middle put runners on second and third after Roenicke also advanced to second on WSU center fielder Jason Freeman's attempt to throw out Taylor at home. The next batter, Will Penniall sent a fly ball to center field deep enough to score Taylor, Jr. from third and give the Bruins a 2-1 lead.
Cougar starter James Freeman set down UCLA in order in both the sixth and seventh innings and retired the first two in the eighth before running into trouble. After having already retired the first two batters in the top of the eighth Freeman beaned Jensen and then allowed McMillan's second hit of the day. Right-hander Brett Sommer then reliever Freeman, only to allow a pinch-hit RBI single to Hector Ambriz which gave UCLA a two-run cushion. The Bruins manufactured another run in the ninth as Nolan Rouse's RBI sacrifice fly plated Chris Denove, who had reached on a fielding error by Sommer.
Schroeder retired the Washington State side in order in the both the fifth, sixth and seventh innings before allowing two base runners in the eighth. Taylor, Jr. helped Schroeder escape that jam by making a diving stop on a ball hit towards the six-hole and throwing to second baseman Sean Carpenter for the force out at second base. He allowed one base runner in the ninth before striking out Garrett Kimbrel to end the game.
Notes: The series victory is the first for UCLA since taking two of three from Cal State Northridge back in February... Schroeder's previous career high in innings pitched was five, a mark he had reached twice earlier this season.