Yarrow, USF exit NCAA regionals
June 3, 2011
LOS ANGELES, Calif. – It wasn’t exactly the dream ending to a stellar season for South Tahoe High School graduate and former baseball standout Stephen Yarrow.
While his ascending to the top of the league drew plenty of recognition and honors, most noticeable being named Defensive Player of the Year in leading the way for ten University of San Francisco, the team fell short in in what might have been the toughest of the 16 NCAA four-team regionals.
Beginning the run with an upset of top-seeded UCLA, it was inevitably both them and UC Irvine who forced the exit-stage-right for Yarrow and his teammates as after a stunning 3-0 shutout of the nation’s top-ranked Division 1 program, they were forced out of the regional with a 4-3 loss to UC Irvine and a 4-1 loss Sunday to UCLA.
“I’m extremely proud of the effort our players gave,” USF coach Nino Giarratano said. “I feel like we represented the West Coast Conference to best of our ability after a win in game one and a 4-3 loss followed by a 4-1 loss to a ranked team at home. This was a tough regional and a great experience for our players. I hope the seniors are proud of what they accomplished this season and hold the memories of the West Coast Conference championship and NCAA Tournament with them forever.”
Giarratano was named Coach of the Year inside the league where the Dons emerged from and continue their trek in the College World Series this Friday against top-seeded UCLA.
Yarrow is the second player in program history to earn Defensive Player of the Year honors. The senior did not commit an error at third base after playing every single inning of the Dons’ 21 league games and recorded 18 put outs and 40 assists.
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“I think Stephen is very much deserving of that award,” Giarratano. “He made phenomenal plays for us this season and made a dramatic line drive stab with a full count and two outs to secure the conference title.”
The Dons finished the season with a .985 fielding percentage, which tied an NCAA record set by West Virginia in 1971.
The 2011 Dons’ baseball team made its way into the program record book in seven different categories. USF totaled a program-record 437 strikeouts this year and were second in saves in a season with 14. The team was fourth in wins (32), team ERA (3.76) and in innings pitched (510.1). USF finished the season with 116 doubles, which was the fifth best in school history, along with 16 conference wins.