From the Matadors 56 regular season games this season, only five will be played outside of California. Four of those games will be this weekend as the Matadors travel to Seattle to take on Seattle University.
The Redhawks come into the series with a 3-11 record; however, they are coming off a 6-4 win over the Oregon Ducks.
CSUN heads into the series with a 9-6 record and are coming off a 13-7 victory over UNLV at Matador Field.
The trip to Seattle will be a homecoming for Matador shortstop Brad Decater, who is from Sammamish, Wash. Decater, who currently has an injured thumb on his right hand, is coming off back-to-back two homerun games. In the victory over UNLV Decater went three-for-three, with the two homers and had seven RBI’s.
“It is going to be a nice homecoming for him,” said head coach Steve Rousey of Decater. “I’m somewhat in awe of the way he has played. It’s a testament to his character.”
Although the Matadors have a better record than the Redhawks, CSUN expects them to play well.
“I expect it to be cold,” said Decater, who expects to see some family and friends at the games. “I expect them to play some good baseball.”
“I wouldn’t let the 3-11 record bother me,”Rousey said. “I expect Seattle to be energetic, enthusiastic and play every inning. They have a nothing to lose approach and those kinds of teams are dangerous. Just because they are 3-11 doesn’t mean they can’t beat you.”
The Matadors have won five of their last six games, however, in their last three wins they have not finished well. After building a 10-0 lead against UNLV, they allowed the Rebels to score seven runs in a span of three innings.
In the Matadors 13-5 victory over LMU, the Matadors were up 13-0 before giving up five unanswered runs.
“I’m a little disappointed,” Rousey said, after the UNLV victory. “We didn’t play very well; we weren’t consistent for nine innings. We might be a little full of ourselves maybe.”
Rousey said that he has noticed that the dugout “gets a little silly” when the Matadors are up big. “We hung on and won the game and that’s good, but we didn’t do it the right way.”
This is not the first time Rousey has talked about the Matadors not competing for the whole nine innings. In their season opener, which was an 18-4 victory for CSUN, Rousey felt that the team was tight at the start of the games. Now it seems as if the Matadors are taking their foot off the pedal at the ending of the games.
Rousey said that it may be human nature to relax at the end of a game where the team is well ahead, but it is something that he and the coaches need to address.
“Our goal is to maintain focused intensity and we didn’t do that,” said Rousey.
Notes:The CSUN-Pepperdine game that was rained out on February 27th has been rescheduled for April 5th.