Now that conference play is in full swing across the country, let's take a conference-by-conference approach to the roundup blog. We'll start with a look at the action in the Pacific-10 Conference, which has featured a number of the nation's most compelling series in Week Seven.
• Arizona State clinched a series win against Oregon with a 3-1 win behind Kramer Champlin (8 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 7 K). With back-to-back series wins against preseason Top 25 foes Arizona and Oregon already under their belts, the Sun Devils look poised to dominate the Pac-10 again.
• Stanford and Oregon State each reversed their fortunes in a big way after sustaining crushing defeats Friday. A day after blowing a late six-run lead to Washington State, the Cardinal bludgeoned the Cougars 22-3, led by mammoth performances from the bottom of the lineup: freshmen Brian Ragira (3-for-6, HR, 7 RBI), Lonnie Kauppila (6-for-6, 3 R, 4 RBI, 3B) and Austin Wilson (4-for-6, HR, 4 RBI) each went nuts for Stanford. The Beavers, meanwhile, bounced back from an 18-0 loss to Arizona with a 10-4 victory on Saturday, led by three-run homers by Ryan Barnes and Ryan Dunn.
• California evened its series against Southern California with a 9-2 win behind Justin Jones (9 IP, 7 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 12 K).
• Trevor Bauer (8 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 10 K) improved to 5-1 in UCLA's 5-3 win against lowly Washington, clinching the series for the Bruins.
• The upset of the day was Maryland's 5-0 win against Florida State, which snapped the Seminoles' remarkable winning streak against the Terrapins at 40 games. It was Maryland's first win against FSU since 1998, and its first home win against the 'Noles since 1993. David Carroll allowed just three hits over seven shutout innings to improve to 5-1, 2.15 for the Terps.
• That wasn't the only upset in the ACC. In Durham, Duke edged Georgia Tech, 4-3, to even the series. Jed Bradley (6 IP, 7 H, 3 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 8 K) was solid in a no-decision for the Yellow Jacekts, but the Blue Devils broke a 3-3 tie with an unearned run off Luke Bard in the seventh, and Marcus Stroman (2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 5 K) slammed the door with two overpowering innings of relief.
• North Carolina clinched a series win against Clemson with a 9-5 victory. Freshmen led the way for the Tar Heels, as Colin Moran drove in three runs in support of Kent Emanuel (6.1 IP, 8 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 2 BB, 6 K). The surprising Tar Heels are 9-2 in ACC play, while disappointing Clemson is 4-7.
• No. 2 Virginia continues to play at a very high level. The Cavaliers clinched the series win at Virginia Tech with a 9-3 win, as David Coleman (4-for-5, 2B, HR, 5 RBI) led a 14-hit attack in support of Tyler Wilson (7 IP, 5 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 10 K). At 27-2 (.931), Virginia leads the nation in wins and winning percentage.
• Behind a strong start from Adam Morgan (8 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 7 K), Alabama beat Arkansas 5-3 to clinch a big SEC West series. The Crimson Tide remained atop the conference's overall standings, improving to 7-1. But Arkansas has opened SEC play with three straight series losses and is one of five SEC teams with a 2-6 conference record.
• Louisiana State is another 2-6 SEC team, after falling to Mississippi, 16-3. Tanner Mathis (4-for-6, 2 R, 3 RBI) led a group of five Rebels to post multi-hit games in support of David Goforth (6 IP, 7 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 6 K), who picked up his first win of the season.
• Georgia remains under .500 overall (13-14), but the Bulldogs improved to 5-3 in conference play with a 4-3 win against Mississippi State, clinching the series. UGa. has won back-to-back series against LSU and MSU. Michael Palazzone (8.2 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 2 ER) was very strong again for Georgia.
• The juggernauts of the SEC East—No. 1 Vanderbilt, No. 3 South Carolina and No. 4 Florida—all clinched their series against Auburn, Kentucky and Tennessee, respectively.
• Oklahoma has rebounded nicely from its 2-6 rough patch during mid-March. The Sooners cruised to an 11-1 win against Texas Tech on Saturday to clinch the series. OU has outscored the Red Raiders 21-2 in the first two games of the series. Saturday pitching continues to be an issue for Oklahoma, as starter Bobby Shore recorded a season-high six strikeouts over 3.2 innings, but he was inefficient, firing 73 pitches. Dillon Overton took over and picked up the win with 2.1 scoreless.
• The Big 12's two other top 10 teams—No. 6 Texas A&M and No. 8 Texas—clinched their series against Kansas State and Missouri, respectively. Jacob House hit a tie-breaking RBI double in the ninth to give the Aggies a 4-3 win. Lucas Kephart (2-for-4, 2B, 5 RBI) had a big day for Texas in a 6-2 victory.
• The other Big 12 team in the Top 25 won't be ranked much longer. No. 19 Baylor fell to Kansas, 4-3. The Bears have lost four straight games and five out of six.
• Keep an eye on Oklahoma State. The Cowboys have followed up their big series win against Texas with a series win at Nebraska. OSU clubbed the Cornhuskers 10-0 on Saturday, as Davis Duren and Mark Ginther combined for five hits and seven RBIs, and Brad Propst (7 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 5 K) improved to 5-1.
• Southern Mississippi is the lone CUSA team currently ranked in the Top 25, and the Golden Eagles just might be the team to beat in CUSA. USM crushed previously high-flying Central Florida, 13-2, to clinch the big series win. A day after hitting a game-winning three-run homer in the ninth, Marc Bourgeois (5-for-5, 3 R, 3 RBI, HR, 3B) had another huge day to lead the Southern Miss offense in support of Geoffrey Thomas (8 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 5 K).
• Preseason CUSA favorite Rice, meanwhile, rebounded from a series loss to UCF by winning a series against Marshall. J.T. Chargois had five RBIs to lead the Owls to a 9-6 win Saturday.
• East Carolina's momentum has been stopped in its tracks by Alabama-Birmingham. The Blazers clinched a series win against the Pirates with a 5-3 win Saturday behind Ryan Woolley (5 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 1 ER).
• Injury-riddled Tulane appears to be in freefall, having lost five of its last six after starting the season 17-4. Plucky Houston beat the Green Wave 5-2 on Saturday to clinch the series in New Orleans. At least Robby Broach (5 IP, 7 H, 4 R, 3 ER) was better for Tulane than he has been since returning from a forearm injury, but he still took the loss.
Around The Nation
• Matt Purke (8 IP, 6 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 3 BB, 6 K) bounced back from a rocky outing last week to pitch well in a no-decision Saturday, as TCU beat Air Force, 3-2. For all the wringing of hands about Purke's "struggles," his season numbers look just fine: 3-1, 1.16 with 35 strikeouts and 10 walks in 31 innings. Opponents are hitting .193 against him—but he has allowed nine unearned runs.
• No. 9 Fresno State improved to 20-2 on the season and ran its winning streak to nine games with a come-from-behind 4-3 win against San Francisco, clinching the series. Jordan Ribera drew a game-tying, bases-loaded walk in the ninth, and Dusty Robinson followed with a walk-off RBI single.
• Cal State Fullerton clinched a road series win at UC Davis with a 7-0 win Saturday, with all seven runs coming in the final two innings. The Titans have outscored the Aggies 21-0 in the first two games of the series, running their winning streak to seven games overall.
• In a matchup of underachieving but talented Big East teams, Connecticut swept a doubleheader against St. John's, 9-1 and 6-5. Matt Barnes (8.2 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 7 K) improved to 5-2, 2.00 in the opener. Don't look now, but George Springer seems to be heating up for the Huskies. He's up to .321/.455/.560 with three homers and 24 RBIs in 24 games, and his walk-strikeout mark is 15-17.
• Coastal Carolina clinched an important Big South series against Liberty with a 5-4 win. Daniel Bowman drove in the winning run with a walk-off sacrifice fly in the ninth.
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