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Titans Take 2nd Place at WSU Palouse College Classic

Posted: 3/5/2007 2:25:00 PM

Pullman, WA - The 2007 season got under way for the Tacoma Titans this past weekend, as they traveled east of the mountains to the campus of Washington State University for the WSU Palouse College Classic. The tournament lineup featured teams from all over the northwest, including Thompson Rivers University, Big Bend Community College, Mt Hood Community College, University of Calgary, and Washington State University. All tournament games were played at WSU's Bailey-Brayton Field.

The Titans opened up their weekend schedule with a resounding 15-5 win over the University of Calgary. TCC got a very solid pitching performance from its sophomore ace Dan Cox, who went 7 1/3 innings, scattering 7 hits to earn his first victory of the season. "Dan gave us exactly what we needed in our first game of the year," Head Coach Donegal Fergus said. "He ate up innings and limited their scoring opportunities. Because he was able to keep their offense in check, our young hitters had a chance to relax and just go out and play." Jake Valentine and Diego Robles led the Titan offensive attack with 2 hits apiece, with both of Robles' hits going for extra bases. 4 other Titans had hits in the game.

In the nightcap, Tacoma took on the Washington State University Cougars, who have two former TCC head coaches on their staff, Travis Jewett, the Associate Head Coach, and Gregg Swenson, WSU Pitching Coach. Although the Cougars jumped out to a commanding 9-0 lead, the young Titan squad finally got their offense going with a 3-run 7th inning, and followed that up with 3 more runs in the 8th and 1 in the 9th. Freshman shortstop Todd Muecklisch collected two hits in the losing effort, including a double in the 7th inning to kickstart the 3-run rally. Sophomore righthander Keith Young absorbed the loss on the mound, giving up 5 runs on 7 hits. "Keith actually pitched pretty well, despite the lopsided score," said Fergus. "WSU played with metal bats so that was certainly an adjustment for our pitchers. I think our guys were more than a little starstruck when the game began, but they eventually settled in and realized it was just another baseball game. It was a great test for our young guys to play against such talented players. Coach Marbut and his staff do a great job with their kids - they certainly came out and spanked us around pretty good early. I thought our boys did a good job to shake off those jitters and respond with a late surge. The Cougars helped us out with a few more walks than Swens (WSU Pitching Coach Gregg Swenson) would like, but we did a decent job of capitalizing on those opportunities."

On Sunday, TCC matched up against Mt Hood for the Championship of the WSU Palouse College Classic. Freshman Jeremy Dunham got the start for the Titans, the first of his college career. After surrendering base hits to two of the first 3 hitters he faced, the 6'5" righthander settled in and allowed only 2 runs through the first 5 innings. The 6th inning was his, and Tacoma's undoing. Mt Hood started the inning with a single, then Dunham induced a pop up to the next hitter. Unfortunately, Titan first baseman Christ Steiner and catcher Anthony Dallosto miscommunicated with each other and the ball dropped safely on the infield. Now with 2 men on and still nobody out, Mt Hood decided to bunt the runners over. Dunham pounced off the mound after the bunt, but misplayed it and all runners were safe. Then the wheels really came off. A walk to the next batter and Dunham's day was done. Freshman reliever Jesse Nunley came in and immediately went 0-2 on the batter, but missed badly with his next pitch and gave up a bases-clearing double which effectively put the game out of reach. Nunley then proceeded to punch out 2 of the next three hitters he faced. "I thought Jeremy pitched very well, even though he didn't have his best stuff and I'm sure he was a little nervous, this being his first col //0) document.write("

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