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Athletics Roundup: 4-Game Win Streak for Women's Hoops; Basketball; Baseball; Softball; W. Tennis

The University of San Diego women's basketball team's surge continued this past week as West Coast Conference home wins over Pacific, 66-61, on Feb. 13 and then 73-59 over Saint Mary's on Feb. 15, put the team's winning streak at four.

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Against Pacific, the Toreros received a 16-point performance off the bench from Leticia Soares as well as 11 points from Jordyn Edwards and 10 from Myah Pace. The Toreros jumped out to a 23-12 first period lead and held on for a 34-30 halftime lead. Pacific took control in the third to take a 50-44 lead entering the final 10 minutes, but USD had a 22-point fourth to seal the victory. The Toreros forced 26 Tiger turnovers.

In the victory over Saint Mary's, Sydney Hunter took control with a season-high 18-point performance, Pace added 14 and Edwards, though only with six points, also had six assists and three steals. San Diego led 20-15 after the first quarter and never looked back. Defensively, the Toreros forced 23 turnovers and turned those into 28 points at the other end of the floor.

USD enters its last regular-season road trip of the season in second place with a 16-9 overall record and 10-4 in conference play.

Women's Basketball Schedule: USD at San Francisco, Thursday, 7 p.m.; USD at Santa Clara, Saturday, 2 p.m.

Men's Basketball

The men's basketball team has been on a streak of late that makes one either happy that it is competing well or frustrated that it has been so close and yet hasn't had success each time they've put themselves into this situation.

One week ago, the Toreros got a 3-pointer to fall at the end of regulation and eventually defeated Portland in double overtime. This past week, San Diego dropped both of its games, at Pepperdine on Feb. 13 and at home against BYU on Feb. 15, in West Coast Conference contests that went down to the final seconds.

Against Pepperdine, USD missed a three-point shot with five seconds left and the Waves ran down the court and Colbey Ross' three-pointer attempt at the buzzer went in for a 72-69 Pepperdine victory. Pepperdine only made four 3-pointers in the game, but three of them came from Ross and two occurred in the final minutes. The outcome overshadowed Braun Hartfield's 26-point performance, though he was the one who took the three-point shot in the waning seconds. He was 5 for 8 from three-point range on the night. Tougher still was that USD led for 34 of the game's 40 minutes.

Against BYU in the Jenny Craig Pavilion, the Toreros had the final shot of the game, but fell 72-71. Hartfield again had the opportunity to win it with a three-point shot while falling down, but it came up short. Just prior to that, BYU had taken the lead on an alley-oop dunk. The game experienced 19 lead changes and eight ties and served as the Toreros' narrowest defeat this season. Four players scored in double figures, led by Finn Sullivan with 16 points off the bench, Jared Rodriguez with 13, Hartfield with 12 and Yauhen Massalski had 11. Massalski scored eight of USD's last nine points, including a layup with just over a minute left to give the Toreros a 70-69 lead.

The two losses gave the Toreros a 9-19 overall record and 2-11 in conference play. The team only has one game this week, Saturday on the road against Saint Mary's.

Men's Basketball Schedule: USD at Saint Mary's, Saturday, 7 p.m., Moraga, Calif.

Baseball

The season-opening weekend for the Torero baseball team at Tempe, Ariz., resulted in a fairly successful start, although a 5-4 loss to West Coast Conference foe Pepperdine (game does not factor into either team's conference record) was the result of the opening game on Feb. 14.

Playing in the inaugural Angels College Classic at the LA Angels of Anaheim's spring training stadium, the Toreros rebounded with wins against Oregon, 6-5, on Feb. 15 and then 7-3 over Minnesota on Feb. 16 for a 2-1 season start.

Against Pepperdine, Shane McGuire's two-run double in the top of the ninth inning closed the gap late but it wasn't enough to rally against the Waves. San Diego led twice, both getting the first run of the game on Paul Kunst's single to score McGuire, who had walked, in the first inning. The Toreros went up 2-1 on Michael Dixon II's RBI single in the fourth inning. Pepperdine scored three in its half off the fourth inning.

Against Oregon, the teams exchanged leads a few times but deadlocked at 5-5 after five innings. The Toreros brought in the winning run on a passed ball in the ninth, scoring Tora Otsuka from third. McGuire had two RBI, Kunst, Cody Jefferis and Adam Lopez each had two hits, Kunst, Jefferis and Caleb Ricketts each had an RBI for the Toreros. Freshman pitcher Connor Thurman got credit for the win, going three innings without allowing a run. He gave up two hits, struck out three and walked four.

On the weekend's final day, Ricketts drove in four runs to lead the Toreros to victory over Minnesota. Ricketts had three hits. Kunst had two hits and scored three runs and McGuire had a hit and an RBI. Pitching-wise, freshman Carter Rustad went five shutout innings, giving up two hits, two walks and striking out four, to earn the victory.

Baseball Schedule: USD hosts UC Irvine, Tuesday, 6 p.m., Fowler Park; Tony Gwynn Legacy Tournament, Friday-Sunday, Fowler Park: Southern Illinois vs. Arizona, Friday, 1 p.m.; USD hosts Nebraska, Friday, 6 p.m.; Arizona vs. Iowa, Saturday, 1 p.m.; USD hosts Seattle Univ., Saturday, 6 p.m.; Seattle vs. So. Illinois, Sunday, 10 a.m.; USD hosts Iowa, Sunday, 2 p.m.

Softball

The record will show that the USD softball team posted a 1-3 mark in the inaugural Golden State Classic, played in Lake Elsinore this past weekend, but the highlight will most certainly be the final game on Feb. 15.

Pitcher Madison Earnshaw tossed the program's first no-hitter since 2016 in a 3-0 victory over Long Island University. Earnshaw walked one, struck out two and faced 22 batters. She forced 12 groundouts and six flyouts and only needed 74 pitches to pick up her first victory of the season. Savannah Alarcon drove in two runs and Halle Kyler had two hits to pace the offense.

On day one of the tournament, Feb. 14, USD dropped both games, a 4-2 setback against Portland State and a 6-5 decision to Seton Hall. Things still weren't going USD's way in the opening game Saturday as Utah State no-hit the Toreros in an 8-0, five-inning decision.

Earnshaw's performance, which moved USD's team record to 3-5, gives them some confidence heading into a busy week, which begins with the Toreros' home opener, a doubleheader today against Idaho State. Games are at noon and 2 p.m. at the USD Softball Complex.

Softball Schedule: USD hosts Idaho State (doubleheader), Monday, noon and 2 p.m., USD Softball Complex; USD at Mary Nutter Classic in Palm Springs: USD vs. Arizona State, Friday, 5:30 p.m.; USD vs. USA Olympic Team, Friday, 8 p.m.; USD vs. New Mexico, Saturday, noon; USD vs. Bethune-Cookman, Saturday, 7:30 p.m.

Women's Tennis

Playing in their first match in a couple of weeks, USD's women's tennis team rallied to defeat Hawaii 4-3 in a nonconference home match on Feb. 16.

Hawaii won the doubles point, breaking a 1-1 tie with a win at No. 2 doubles. The Toreros' No. 3 team of Gemma Garcia and Elizabeth Goldsmith won their match.

The doubles result then put the emphasis on the singles matches. Toreros Solymar Colling, Goldsmith and Maria Tyrina each had to go to a third set in their respective matches, but each one prevailed for a 3-3 deadlock. In the final singles match of the day, USD's No. 6 Kati Kukaras finished it off with a 7-5 (4), 7-5 victory to give the Toreros the winning margin.

This match was the start of a five-match homestand for USD (3-3), including two more matches this week.

Women's Tennis Schedule: USD hosts Long Beach State, Thursday, 1:30 p.m., Hogan Tennis Center; USD hosts USC, Saturday, 1 p.m., Hogan Tennis Center.

Torero Sport Shorts

The men's tennis team, off since a Feb. 9 road loss at Oklahoma, resume their season schedule with home matches this weekend. On Saturday at 10 a.m. they’ll face Oregon and then Sunday at 12:30 p.m. they'll open West Coast Conference play against Loyola Marymount. ... The golf team opens its spring season Friday in Palm Desert at the Wyoming-hosted Desert Classic that runs through the weekend. ... The women's rowing team has spent the past two weekends competing in scrimmages with Minnesota (Feb. 9) and both San Diego State and UC San Diego (Feb. 15). ... The women's swim and dive team competes in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championship meet beginning Wednesday and running through Saturday at East Los Angeles College. ... The 2020 USD football schedule has been announced. The Toreros open their 11-game regular season at UC Davis on Sept. 5 and, after a bye week, play at Cal Poly on Sept. 19. USD opens Pioneer Football League play at Valparaiso Sept. 26. Its home opener isn't until Oct. 3 against Butler. USD plays five home games, including the regular-season finale Nov. 21 against Georgetown. ... In USD football alumni news, former USD standout Josh Johnson, who has played for many teams in the NFL, made his XFL debut at quarterback for the Los Angeles Wildcats on Feb. 16. Despite a 25-18 loss to the Dallas Renegades, Johnson threw two touchdown passes and completed the league's first-ever three-point conversion.

USD Athletics

Keep up with all USD Athletics news, scores and information on its website. Follow the Toreros on social media: FacebookTwitter and Instagram.

Photo Slideshow images by Ryan T. Blystone (women's basketball shots) and USD Athletics website.

Contact:

USD News Center
news@sandiego.edu
619-260-4600 x 6652