Baseball Opens 2020 in Surprise, Ariz.

GU joins Oregon State, BYU and New Mexico in round robin

SANDERSON FORD COLLEGE BASEBALL CLASSIC
Feb. 14-17 | Surprise, Ariz. | Surprise Stadium
Live Video (subscription required) | Live Stats


Feb. 14 | 5 p.m. | Gonzaga vs. BYU
LHP Mac Lardner (0-0, 0.00) vs. RHP Justin Sterner (0-0, 0.00)


Feb. 15 | 2 p.m. | Gonzaga vs. Oregon State
RHP Alek Jacob (0-0, 0.00) vs. LHP Jake Mulholland (0-0, 0.00)


Feb. 16 | 1 p.m. | Gonzaga vs. Oregon State
RHP NIck Trogrlic-Iverson (0-0, 0.00) vs. RHP Jake Pfennings (0-0, 0.00)


Feb. 17 | 10 a.m. | Gonzaga vs. New Mexico
RHP Gabriel Hughes (0-0, 0.00) vs. RHP Justin Armbruester (0-0, 0.00)


Tournament Coverage
- Gonzaga will be joined by fellow WCC squad BYU, host Oregon State and New Mexico.
- Live Video: Flo Live will stream each of the Beavers' four games in Surprise. A subscription is required, visit Flo.TV to sign up and watch the games.
- Live stats for the game can be accessed by clicking on the live stats link located on the baseball schedule page on GoZags.com.

Season Opening Surprise
- Gonzaga is opening in Surprise, Arizona, for the fourth straight season.
- This is the 19th consecutive season the Zags have started the year in a warm-weather climate (since 2002)...they've played 11 season openers in Arizona since 2003, including six of the last seven (2014: Tucson, 2016: Phoenix, 2017-18-19: Surprise).
- Head coach Mark Machtolf is entering his 17th season at the helm of the program, and his 30th season on the Gonzaga coaching staff overall. He has a career record of 481-387-2.

GU Picked to Win WCC
- Gonzaga baseball was once again tabbed the favorite to win the West Coast Conference, while three Zags were named Preseason All-WCC in the league's preseason poll, voted on by the 10 head coaches.
- Junior righthander Alek Jacob – a 2019 Preseason All-American – headlines three Bulldogs on the 2020 WCC preseason squad. Junior infielder Brett Harris and senior infielder Ernie Yake earned spots and all three earned 2019 All-WCC honors.
- Gonzaga earned 71 points in the poll with two first-place votes, just three points ahead of BYU, who earned five first-place votes and 68 total points.
- LMU was third with three first-place votes and 65 total points. Pepperdine and San Diego finished tied for fourth with 52 points.

Jacob Named Preseason All-American
- Junior right-hander Alek Jacob was named a Preseason All-American by three different outlets, including a First Team not by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association.
- He was named Second Team by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper and Third Team by Perfect Game.
- A two-time All-WCC honoree pitched in 25 games with four starts in 2019. He compiled a 7-3 record in 78.2 innings with a 2.17 ERA.
- Jacob had 12 saves and 87 strikeouts, leading the team in both categories.
- Jacob follows last season's Preseason All-America nod earned by Casey Legumina. Prior to Legumina, Jeff Bohling was the last Zag to earn Collegiate Baseball Preseason All-America honors in 2016. Marco Gonzales was also a preseason All-American ahead of the 2013 season.

Returning for 2020
- RHP Alek Jacob was named to the All-WCC First Team and led a group of six returning players recognized by the league last season.
- SS Ernie Yake was named to the Second Team and LHP Mac Lardner, 3B Brett Harris and CF Guthrie Morrison were named Honorable Mention.
- Mason Wells was named to the All-Freshman Team.
- Jacob, Yake and Harris were all named to the 2020 All-WCC Preseason squad.
- Jacob ranked 23rd nationally with his 12 saves, but will move into a full-time starting role in 2020.
- Yake was the third toughest-to-strikeout nationally last season, going down on strikes only once every 17.3 at-bats.
- Lardner led the squad and was 62nd nationally in strikeout-to-walk ratio at 4.60.

Strong 2020 Schedule
- Gonzaga head coach Mark Machtolf has put together another strong schedule with 15 games against NCAA Tournament teams from last season.
- The non-conference schedule is highlighted by a four-game series on the road against 2019 College World Series participant Arkansas and four total games against last year's regional host and No. 1 seed Oregon State.
- Three-game sets against Loyola Marymount and Cal, as well as a single mid-week game late in the season at Stanford round out the matchups against some 2019's most successful squads.
- Machtolf on the schedule: "Our goal every year is to play as competitive of a schedule as we can that will put us in the best position to win the WCC, advance to the NCAA tournament and ultimately make it to Omaha. We feel this non-conference schedule accomplishes that goal on paper, our players will have the opportunity to play in some big-time venues and atmospheres throughout the season. We also look forward to giving our great fans in Spokane 24 opportunities to see us play at Patterson Baseball Complex."

30 Wins Again in 2019
- Gonzaga hit the 30-win barrier for the fourth straight season and seventh time in the last nine years in 2019, combined for a 31-24 overall record.
- During head coach Mark Machtolf's now 16 years at the helm, GU has won at least 30 games 10 times.

2019 Recap
- Gonzaga is made its sixth trip to the WCC Tournament in the seven-year history of the four-team format, falling to Saint Mary's a game shy of the championship.
- GU finished in second in the West Coast Conference with an 18-9 league record.
- Gonzaga finished ninth nationally in doubles per game at 2.22, led by draftee Troy Johnston's 27 on the year. Returners Guthrie Morrison (13), Ernie Yake (12) and Brett Harris (12) had the next three highest totals.
- Gone from the 2019 squad are three MLB draftees, including eighth-round selection Casey Legumina, 17th-round pick Troy Johnston and 22nd-rounder Austin Pinorini.

Gonzaga Article Link