Seattle U came into Pullman this weekend, in a series originally scheduled to play at Bannerwood Park in Bellevue. The three games were played at Bailey-Brayton Field, in front of some fans (socially-distanced, mostly family of the players and the coaching staff).
Game 1: WSU 8 – 1 Seattle U
Starting RHP Zane Mills had yet another strong outing, and the offense pulled through to help take game one of three. Mills went eight strong, striking out seven, improving his personal record to 3-0. Senior LHP Michael Newstrom came in to throw a scoreless ninth inning, his sixth appearance of the season.
RF Collin Montez and third baseman Jack Smith each had three hits, and first baseman Kyle Manzardo went yard again, extending his hit streak to 26 consecutive games. It’s Montez’s third straight three-hit game and Smith drove in two. All in all, WSU had 13 hits.
Game 2: WSU 14 – 7 Seattle U
WSU was up early, hit somewhat of a rough patch, but eventually found their offensive groove, propelling them to a record of 9-1. This equaled their best start since 2010, and it was also their third straight series win for the first time since 2008.
OF Justin Van De Brake and catcher Jake Meyer both had three hits and two RBIs. Yet again, first baseman Kyle Manzardo collected two hits and two runs batted in, moving him to 27 straight games with at least one base hit. He trails only Shawn Stevenson’s program record of 28 games with a hit, which was set during the 1997-98 seasons. SS Kodie Kolden was injured in the game, and Freshman IF Gunner Gouldsmith came in strong with two hits, scoring twice and driving in one. The Cougs tied a season-high 16 hits in this one.
Starting RHP Brandon White struggled a bit in this one. He went only 3 2/3, giving up five earned to the Redhawks. Senior reliever Bryce Moyle earned the win in this one, pumping 2 2/3 scoreless innings, striking out five Seattle U hitters.
Game 3: Seattle U 6 – 2 WSU
A stout pitching performance from Seattle U quiets WSU’s bats, and the Redhawks take the final game of the home series. Unfortunately for Junior Kyle Manzardo (0-4), his “three-year hit streak” came to an end at 27 games. He will remain in second in the WSU record books for longest consecutive hit streak, falling just one short of Coug-legend Shawn Stevenson.
SU starter Morgan White got his first win of the season, holding WSU to two hits, striking out four and not giving up a run. As for WSU, starter Will Sierra didn’t succeed as well as White. Sierra went only 1 2/3, giving the Redhawks two in the first inning. Junior RHP Dakota Watkins came in for relief of Sierra, did very well, but it wasn’t enough to combat Seattle U’s pitching performance.
The bats were quiet for the Cougs in the series finale. WSU had only five hits, and three of those went to Freshman SS Gunner Gouldsmith, who is filling in for the injured Kodie Kolden. The other two hits went to Senior third baseman Jack Smith, who had an RBI single, and Freshman LF Keith Jones II. Manzardo was able to extend his on-base streak with a walk, and he did have the other RBI on a groundout.
Next Up: WSU (9-2) will head to Seattle to take on Seattle U (5-5) for two more, and then UW (4-5) for the final two games on the west-side of the state. All games will be played at Husky Stadium, March 11th-13th.
(Photo via WSU Athletics)