Three Stars: Cipriano’s Hot Bat Leads Yellowjackets
YAKIMA, Wash. — Daniel Cipriano had the hot bat for Montana State University-Billings to help the Yellowjackets to three wins in four nonleague games over the holiday weekend.
• Cipriano, a senior first baseman who played for the Pippins in 2019 before an injury cut his summer short, hit two home runs in games Friday and Saturday and finished the weekend 8 for 16 (.500) with seven RBIs and four extra-base hits to improve his batting average to .321 (9-for-28) in the team’s first seven games.
Cipriano’s teammates who have or will play in Yakima also fared well: Tanner Parker (Pippins 2019) drove in four runs Friday against CSU-Pueblo, and teammate Cort Dietrich, who will pitch for the Pippins this summer, earned a victory against Sioux Falls on Friday with 1.2 innings pitched, and struck out two in a scoreless inning of relief on Saturday against CSU-Pueblo. Andrew Schleusner (Pippins 2018) had two-hit games on Friday and Saturday and is batting .357 (5-for-14) with two RBIs and a double in four starts this season.
• Joe Magrisi (Cal State Fullerton, Pippins 2019) struck out five and walked one while allowing two hits in six innings of work against Stanford on Sunday. But two unearned runs against Magrisi, the Pippins’ ace last year, helped the Cardinal to a 2-1 victory and salvaged the three-game weekend series against Fullerton, which had won the first two matchups in the series. Zach Lew (Pippins 2019), Magrisi’s Fullerton teammate, batted leadoff for the Titans in all three games and finished the weekend 6-for-13 (.462) with a triple, an RBI and five runs scored. For Stanford, true freshmen Henry Gargus (Davis High School, Yakima) and Owen Cobb, who both played for the Pippins in 2019 before season-ending injuries, made brief debuts against Fullerton. Gargus struck out in a pinch-hitting role in Friday’s game, and Cobb pinch-ran in Sunday’s contest.
• Cody Jefferis (Univ. of San Diego, Pippins 2018) went 2-for-4 Friday in a 5-4 loss to Pepperdine, and also was 2-for-4 with an RBI in a 6-5 win over Oregon on Saturday.