Appel Bounces Back, Manaea Finds His Mojo

Preseason All-American selections Mark Appel (Stanford) and Sean Manaea (Indiana State) returned to form in their second starts of the season, casting aside all concerns about their 2013 debuts.

After picking up just his third loss since his sophomore year, Appel tossed a complete-game against visiting Fresno State. This time the Cardinal offense did just enough to get him a W in a 3-1 victory. Appel was the epitome of efficient, allowing just four base-runners, while racking up 11 punchouts, finishing off the Bulldogs on 106 pitches.

Manaea didn’t go the distance, but he too had no problem mowing down opposing batters via the strikeout. He racked up ten Ks in just six innings, allowing just three base-runners and only one via a base hit. He didn’t get as much support, and was tagged with a no-decision.

Other star performers on Friday night included Vanderbilt lefty Kevin Ziomek (7 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 11 K, 2 BB), who looked downright dominant against overmatched Monmouth. Ziomek has struck out 18 batters in two starts so far this season, allowing just nine hits and two runs.

UCLA’s Adam Plutko (6 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 2 K, 2 BB) did just enough to keep the Bruins in the game, en route to their third consecutive victory.

Rice ace right-hander Austin Kubitza (7 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 13 K, 5 BB) was at his best again in the Owls 2-0, 17-inning victory. He now has 25 strikeouts in 13 innings.

Diminutive southpaw Dillon Overton (8 IP, 7 H, 0 ER, 9 K, 0 BB) guided Oklahoma to a 3-1 victory over Iowa.

Gonzaga left-hander Marco Gonzales (7 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 8 K, 2 BB) found his groove against UNLV, leading the Bulldogs to a 9-3 win.

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