Tommy Splaine, a 2021 Los Gatos High graduate, receives congratulations from his Arizona teammates after their 4-3 win over USC in the Pac-12 Tournament Championship Game at Scottsdale Stadium on May 25. Photo by Mike Christy/Arizona Athletics.

Tommy Splaine was on the receiving end of not one but two Gatorade showers in the aftermath of the University of Arizona baseball team’s riveting 4-3 win over USC in the Pac-12 Tournament championship game on May 25 in Scottsdale, Ariz. 

Splaine’s one-out single in the bottom of the ninth inning scored pinch runner Emilio Corona from second base, setting off a wild celebration. A day after the victory, Arizona (36-21) was awarded one of the 16 hosting regional spots in the upcoming NCAA Tournament. 

Perhaps more impressive than Splaine’s hit itself was that he hardly broke sentence as he was dunked with back-to-back Gatorade showers by his teammates during an on-field postgame interview. 

“It means everything,” Splaine, a 2021 Los Gatos High graduate, said on “I grew up an Arizona fan, diehard. Diehard Pac-12 fan. So this is a really big one for Arizona.”

A 6-foot-5, 207-pound junior catcher/first baseman, Splaine earned praise from Arizona coach Chip Hale. 

“If he was a professional, I’d say he’s a consummate professional because he has not let any of his struggles at the plate affect him on defense,” Hale said. “That’s why he’s out there. He holds down that infield, and I’m just so happy that it was him that got the winning hit tonight.” 

Admittedly, Splaine’s season hasn’t gone the way he’d liked from an offensive standpoint, as he entered the USC game with a career-low .231 batting average. However, Splaine picked the right time to find his swing, as he’s hit safely in four of his past five games, going 6-for-18 in that stretch. 

Despite striking out in his first two at-bats vs. USC, Splaine responded well, singling in his final two at-bats. Splaine had a hand in the Wildcats scoring all four of their runs in the final three innings. He led off the bottom of the eighth inning with a single and eventually came around to score to cut their deficit to 3-2.  

An inning later, as he approached the plate with an opportunity for a walk-off victory, Splaine delivered, depositing a sharp single to left field. After a standout career at Los Gatos High, Splaine made an immediate impact at Arizona, starting 47 games as a true freshman.

He finished the 2022 season with a .271 average and 29 runs scored, 20 walks, seven doubles, three triples, two home runs and 24 RBIs.

Splash sensation

Another 2022 LGHS graduate, Zoe Frangieh, has made an impact at the Division I level. Frangieh had a terrific 2024 water polo season playing 2-meter defense for Arizona State, appearing in every game for the second straight year.

Frangieh finished with 17 goals, eight steals and five assists for a Sun Devils team that went 23-8 and won the fifth-place game in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Tournament, arguably the toughest conference in the nation.  

Frangieh tallied a career-high four goals and added two assists in a win over Ottawa on March 30, one of six multi-goal games she registered this past season. 

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Emanuel Lee primarily covers sports for Weeklys/NewSVMedia's Los Gatan publication. Twenty years of journalism experience and recipient of several writing awards from the California News Publishers Association. Emanuel has run eight marathons with a PR of 3:13.40, counts himself as a true disciple of Jesus Christ and loves spending time with his wife and their two lovely daughters, Evangeline and Eliza.


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