Courtesy Gonzaga athletics
MALIBU, Calif. – The 24th-ranked Gonzaga University baseball team extended its season-best winning streak to 10 games Friday with a 6-3 road victory over Pepperdine University at Eddy D. Field Stadium. The Bulldogs scored four runs in the sixth inning and Marco Gonzales threw seven strong innings to clinch the first contest of the three-game series.
Gonzaga boosts its record to 25-10-1 and widens its lead atop the West Coast Conference standings to 12-4. Pepperdine, who sits second in WCC standings, falls to 20-16 overall, 8-5 in league.
Entering the sixth frame, the Bulldogs held a 2-1 edge but earned some breathing room in the form of four runs. Cory LeBrun (single) and Gonzales (walk) reached base safely to open the inning against Wave starter Scott Frazier. Gonzaga loaded the bases with one out after a Clayton Eslick intentional walk.
Frazier then became his own enemy by walking Abbruzza to bring home the first run in the inning. Cabe Reiten followed with an RBI single to center to push a run home. Another walk to Payden Cawley Lamb from Frazier brought in the third run and ended his day on the mound.
Caleb Wood brought home the last run with a single through the left side of the infield.
Gonzales (5-2) earned the victory by battling through seven innings. The Waves got eight hits off the Fort Collins, Colo., native but Gonzales was tabbed for just two runs, one earned.
Kenny Smith made his 11th appearance of the season and picked up his second save. Smith allowed three hits and one run in two innings.
Pepperdine out-hit the Bulldogs 11-6 but it hardly mattered as GU manufactured its runs by taking advantage of the Waves two errors.
LeBrun and Wood, two each, combined for four of Gonzaga's six hits.
The Zags 10 game win streak matches its longest since last season when GU started 10-0.
The Bulldogs and Waves continue the series Saturday at Eddy. D. Field Stadium with a 1 p.m. first pitch.