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Baseball: Mesa falls to Uni, 11-1

April 12, 2000

Joseph Boo

IRVINE - For the first two innings, Costa Mesa High's baseball team

was hanging in there with Pacific Coast League titan University. And

then, as chef Emeril Lagasse would say, bam!

The Trojans exploded for 10 runs in three innings and host University was

standing on top of an 11-1 mercy rule victory Tuesday. If there was a

consolation for the Mustangs in their five-inning appearance, it's that

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they won't be the first, or the last team to get steamrolled under Uni's

General Sherman-like march through the PCL.

"I told our kids we'll probably lose two games this week," Costa Mesa

Coach Kirk Bauermeister, whose team faces Uni Thursday, said. "I just

told them to go out, play hard and compete."

Another key fact for Mesa, which falls to 3-4 in league and 6-9-1

overall, is that it will wrap up its schedule with Uni before Corona del

Mar and Laguna Beach. CdM, currently a half game ahead of Mesa for second

place in league, still has two games against the Trojans. Laguna Beach,

which is tied with Mesa for third, also has a pair left with Uni.

And that bodes well for the Mustangs. In its five PCL wins, Uni (11-3,

5-0 in league and ranked No. 6 in CIF Southern Section Division II)

outscored opponents, 53-8.

After two innings, the game was tied, 1-1. Mesa scored in the first

inning when Josh Little, who hit a leadoff double for the Mustangs,

scored on an error by Uni third baseman Kevin Conlin.

But Conlin made up for it in Uni's half of the first. He crushed a double

that would have been a three-bagger if he did not twist his ankle while

rounding first. Despite the limp, Conlin hobbled in to score on two Mesa

wild pitches.

The Mustangs managed solid hits against Uni ace Matt Gamble in the first

three innings. Billy Halverson smoked a single in the second, and Daniel

Hunter hit a sharp base hit in the third. But both runners failed to

reach second base.

"This was a game of experience vs. inexperience," Bauermeister said. "Our

guys got scared during clutch situations. We have to settle down and make

plays."

In the third inning, Conlin blasted a three-run homer and Uni's offense

started its 11 run barrage. Conlin was Uni's star, amassing three hits in

the game and missing the cycle by a single.

But what really hurt Mesa was Uni's 7-8-9 hitters, who accounted for four

runs.

"We didn't do a good job with the bottom of their lineup," Bauermeister

said. "Conlin and (Jay) Nichols are going to get their hits, but we have

to get the guys out in front of them. We have to hold them to solo home

runs, not three-run homers."

On the other side, Gamble settled down, and at one point, struck out

seven Mesa batters in a row until Nick Cabico got an infield hit.

PACIFIC COAST LEAGUE

University 11, Costa Mesa 1 Costa Mesa 100 00 - 1 4 3 University 104 34 - 11 11 1 Haubrick and Fajardo; Gamble and Wood. W - Gamble, 4-0. L - Haubrick,

3-1. 2B - Little (CM), Conlin (U), Edmonds (U). 3B - Conlin (U), Cumsky

(U). HR - Conlin.

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