A lot happened this week in Gonzagaâ€™s athletic department. From golf, to basketball, to baseball, to former Zags, there are plenty of little stories to talk about.
Monday, Clayton Mortensen was brought up by the Colorado Rockies for their game against the San Francisco Giants. Mortensen played for the Bulldogs in 2006 as a junior pitcher. He then went into the MLB and bounced around playing in farm systems occasionally getting called up to play a game or two for the major team. After being called up Monday from his Triple A team in Colorado Springs, the Idaho native was the bright spot for the Rockies in their dismal 8-1 loss to the defending World Champs. Mortensen threw the final six innings, only giving up two hits, while notching one strikeout and walking two batters. His scoreless debut will hopefully keep him on the roster for a lengthily period time.
Tuesday, Gonzagaâ€™s womenâ€™s golf program made a statement, finishing second in the WCC tournament. The highest finish in program history was greatly appreciated by the team, and most of the WCC, as Pepperdine and USF are always the top two teams in the conference, and never has any other school broken up their dominance. While Pepperdine did clinch the overall title for the 10th straight year, Gonzaga played well, and earned quite a bit of recognition doing so. Coach Brad Rickel was the recipient of the WCC Coach of the Year Award. Victoria Fallgren, a sophomore, and TJ Kliebphipat, a freshman, earned first team WCC honors, while senior Sage Suffecool and juniors Stephanie Corey and Jessica Howe were honorable mentions.
Wednesday, a tweet surfaced about Mangisto Arop possibly leaving the basketball program and exploring opportunities elsewhere to continue his collegiate career. That rumor was confirmed Thursday, as the school released a statement saying the 6â€™6 sophomore was granted a release by head coach Mark Few. After a promising freshman season, Arop suffered a broken foot in the conference semi-final game. He came back with a decent first half of his sophomore season, but ultimately was not found in the favor of the coaching staff as his minutes dwindled to nearly nothing the final half of conference play. Â Manny is not sure where he will attend school next year, but is in the process of finding the best fit for his future.
Thursday, a whole lot happened in the Zag sports bubble. Sophomore golfer, Travis Johnsen was named to the all WCC team with his fourth place finish in the conference tournament. Thursday night, the baseball team hosted St. Maryâ€™s in the first of a three game series. The Bulldogs clinched a 5-2 win, with junior pitcher Ryan Carpenter completing the whole game. Seniors Tyler Chism and Cameron Edman both tallied an RBI in the win, as sophomore Billy Moon drove in two runs during the game.
In the late night highlights on ESPN, Gonzaga baseball got a shout out as former Zag Jason Bay made his season debut for the New York Mets. Bay left the Bulldogs after his one and only junior season in 1999, but has made an impact in the Big Leagues since he got there. In the Metsâ€™ game against the Astroâ€™s Thursday night, Bay hit a long shot to right field that should have been a high fly ball. Well, the right fielder bobbled the ball and it kept rolling back into the corner. Meanwhile, Bay sprinted around the diamond getting an unlikely inside the park home run off the four-base error play.
Friday, the baseball team will take the field against the Gaels again, as they try to clinch the series with a win. Tyler Olson is expected to be the starting pitcher for the Bulldogs.