The USC Trojans fell short losing 13-9 in a tight, back and forth game one against the California Golden Bears. Cal’s Andrew Vaughn proved to be the difference maker with two home runs tallying a total of seven runs batted in, including a walk off grand slam.
USC started fast with a three run first inning courtesy of a pair of RBI singles from Frankie Rios and Brandon Perez followed by a sacrifice fly. Despite the early start, USC freshman Chris Clarke imploded, allowing four runs to score (three earned) on two hits and three walks, failing to even make it out of the first frame. Cal then went on to build a 7-4 lead heading into the eighth, until a late Trojans rally hoped to put them ahead for good. USC produced five runs in the top of the eighth, taking advantage of three Cal errors in the inning which resulted in extra bags and men on base. This charge was led by hits from Brandon Perez and Adalberto Castillo (who finished with a pair of RBIs on the night) to take a 9-7 lead. However, USC’s lead diminished over two innings of work, as the Bears produced six total runs from Denis Karas’ two run blast and Vaughn’s walk off grand slam.
While neither starting pitcher in Clarke nor Jared Horn performed well, both teams offenses provided ample run support. Bryce Dyrda, who has been lights out all year for the Trojan bullpen, faltered for the second appearance in a row, allowing six runs over just an inning and two thirds work. His ERA has now climbed almost two points during his recent struggles and now sits at 3.08 for the year. USC takes the field again for game two of the series on Saturday at 6 pm PT.
W: Erik Martinez (2-2 1.37 ERA) 1.1 IP 0 H R 0 ER 1 K
L: Bryce Dyrda (2-1 3.08 ERA )1.2 IP 4 H 6 ER 2 BB 3 K
Andrew Vaughn (Cal) 2-4 2 HR 7 RBI 2 R 2 BB
Frankie Rios (USC) 2-5 2 R RBI