Cal successfully bounced back from Friday's defeat with a convincing 9-2 victory yesterday afternoon. After sounding sluggish and falling behind quickly to open the series, it was Cal's turn to jump all over the Trojans early. Six runs scored in the first inning, much of them handed to the Bears by USC's pitching and defense. The rally began with consecutive hit batsmen, and by the time the inning was over USC had walked another batter, committed an error and allowed Darrel Matthews to steal home! Cal 'only' managed four singles in the inning, but it provided more than enough cushion. The Bears would add three more runs for good measure, two from a Devin Rodriguez home run in the 6th inning.
Justin Jones made that margin stand up with another dominating performance. In his first complete game of the season Jones allowed only one earned run, seven hits and a walk across the entire game. Beyond successfully holding on to a big lead, Jones also allowed a bullpen a full day of rest after picking up four innings on Friday.
But the Bears will hope to not need the bullpen again this afternoon as Dixon Anderson (3-1, 2.20 ERA) takes the mound in the series finale. He'll face Logan Odom (2-3, 3.31 ERA), who has been USC's most successful pitcher so far this season. Odom quieted UCLA last Sunday for a critical upset victory and this time will be looking for an upset series victory. Cal, conversely, would love to finish their six game homestand to open conference play on a high note. USC and Washington St. aren't top of the Pac-10 teams this year, but a 5-1 record would still be an excellent record. Go Bears!