Loyola Marymount’s baseball team will open West Coast Athletic Conference play with a four-game series starting today at the University of San Francisco. The teams will play at 2 p.m. today, a noon doubleheader Saturday and at 1 p.m. Sunday, the traditional conference series setup that taxes pitching staffs.
The Lions begin conference play with only a 10-12 record but have begun to score runs as expected after a slow start at the plate. The Lions, who have won nine of their last 14 games, have upped their average to .314 behind the slugging of third baseman Rick Allen (.432), catcher Miah Bradbury (.387), outfielder Travis Tarchione (.375) and first baseman Tim Williams (.328). Outfielder Brian Turang, at .288, leads in home runs with four. Tarchione has knocked in 21 runs, followed by Allen and Turang at 20 apiece.
Senior right-hander Kalani Bush has been the surprise pitcher with a 4-1 record and 2.95 earned-run average. However, the team ERA is 5.18 and opponents are batting .306.
Last weekend the Lions scored 39 runs in three games against UC Santa Barbara but lost two of them. The Lions have been outscored, 63-44, after the fifth inning.
USF is off to a 3-13 start and may be even weaker against Loyola. The Dons will be without their best player, outfielder Arnie Sambel, who is injured.