Saturday, March 18, 2006


After considerable research using the latest in CIA spy satellites we can confirm that the only other place where there are more singles than those coming out of the Wichita State dugout is closing time at the USO club in downtown Baghdad. In two days and 28 hits, the Shockers have 25 singles. Ugly--well you dance with what brung you and to the chattering black and gold hats in the left field bleachers they just love a weekend at the Beach.

Yesterday was more competitive than Friday but the end marked the worst stretch of LBSU weekend baseball since 1988. Not since then has a Niner team lost more than two consecutive weekend series—they lost back to back weekends in 2004, 2001, 1991, and 1990. 1988 you will recall was that long dark season of 14-45 that turned around a year later with season one of Dirtbag ball under Dave Snow—50 and 15.

Ironically what started out well for the Niners with two scores in the second turned sour in the sixth, hopeful with a five spot in the seventh, and then tragic when the pen collapsed in the ninth. The Shocker slashers once again were Josh Workman and Damon Sublett (both 3-for-4). The Beach just couldn’t get to WSU starter Rob Musgrave until the seventh then worked over reliever Noah Krol who faced four batters in the seventh inning, allowing three earned runs on two hits. Hutson, Touchatt and Sublett kept the Beach boys in check the rest of the way. The bright spots for the Bags were freshmen Kip Masuda and Shane Peterson--three hits a piece—but the meat of the order, Longoria, Boatright and Bradley were a combined 2-12. Andrew Carpenter started strong—fanning five over the first four innings—but somehow in the sixth it all went away. Four straight singles and suddenly the Shockers had a 5-2 lead. Shane “Slash” Peterson's RBI single in the second gave LBSU a 1-0 lead, following a leadoff double by Sean Boatright, his first hit after missing three weeks of the season. A hit by pitch with the bases loaded made it 2-0 but the inning ended as did a number of others with stranded runners (9 for the day.)

Today the Niners will try to salvage something sending Vance Worley (1-4, 5.24) against Kris Johnson (2-0, 6.14). After that a week at the drawing boards with no Tuesday contest then the trip behind the Orange Curtain to Cal State Who next weekend. Pack your earplugs and smuggle in your beer.

SUNDAY MY DUST WILL COME—The tonic for the baseball disappointment was a stop by the Pyramid to observe the inside job by senior Duncan Budinger who tied his career-high with 28 kills while hitting .590 as #3 Long Beach State rolled to a 30-16, 30-26, 30-27 win over No. 11-ranked Ohio State…Long Beach hit an impressive .485 (59-12-97) in the match, including a .692 in game one…Budinger hit .590 (28-5-39) while Robert Tarr hit .520 (14-1-25) with 14 kills…All-American setter Tyler Hildebrand, who moved into the No. 2 spot all-time in career assists this weekend, finished with 52 assists, three digs and a team-high four blocks…Paul Lotman added eight kills and a team-high nine digs… long distance dialing, a faithful reader wanted to know how Sac State was doing, the new employer of Don Barbara…this weekend was another rough one, lost two of three to Utah Valley State, dropping an 8-0 on Friday and splitting on Saturday--7-1 win and 6-5 loss…last add Utah Valley, their softball bunch is playing a double dip themselves against Niner Michelle Turner and company on campus today…Turner pitched a perfect game over Mercer at the LBSU Invitational last Friday and was named Big West Conference Pitcher of the Week…it was the seventh perfect game in school history, and came with a career-high 11 strikeouts…WSI btw won their basketball contest yesterday making a famous BB alum, Paul Wight (aka Big Show), happy…he played BB at Wichita State in the early 1990's…next to excitement at the Eck (ask Oracle about this matter--hint--on deck circle) his patented Chokeslam aka Showstoppa is a Midwest favorite…

We close with another bit of disturbing history, Saturday was the first day in my memory when the Beach was the only Big West school to lose...check out the scoreboard…Pacific 10, California 3, Santa Barbara 13, TCU 3; UC Irvine 10, Oral Roberts 7; Northridge 6, LMU 3; Fullerton 5, Arizona 3; Cal Poly 5, Washington 4—DR. DAN…


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