There were a handful of interesting games on the schedule Monday, but once again the Oregon Ducks made the biggest splash. Oregon wrapped up its four-game Southern California swing with a 3-1 record after cruising to a 12-3 win against Loyola Marymount on Monday. To put that in perspective, Oregon scored 12 runs just once in 2009, and did not score more than five runs in any of its final 19 games of the season.
Sophomore second baseman Danny Pulfer had three hits and four RBIs to lead the Oregon offense. One of the key members of Oregon's first recruiting class, Pulfer was a disappointment last year, batting .240/.340/.257 in 55 games. The Ducks thought he had made strides since last season and were hoping to get a better sophomore season out of him; he's off to a strong start (7-for-17 with six RBIs through four games).
Elsewhere, Kansas and Eastern Michigan opened their seasons by splitting a doubleheader in the Metrodome. Oregon State won the finale of its four-game series against Hawaii 5-0 behind strong pitching from James Nygren and Matt Boyd. The Beavers won the series 3-1. Fresno State also won its opening series three games to one, but the Bulldogs dropped Monday's finale against Nebraska, 4-1. Talented freshman Tom Lemke went five scoreless for the Cornhuskers.
UC Riverside has gotten off to a 4-0 start, sweeping Brigham Young this weekend and rolling to a 6-1 win against Bethune-Cookman on Monday. Freshman righthander Trevor Frank, a key recruit coming off ACL surgery last April, threw six shutout innings in his debut for Riverside.
There is a large slate of games on tap today. I'll be watching to see if Rice can finally get into the win column against a tough Texas State team that is coming off a three-game sweep of Houston.
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