By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN
LOS ANGELES -- Centennial graduate Cody Kessler capped off USC spring football practice with a terrific Spring Game performance Saturday in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.
According to the L.A. Daily News, Kessler completed 15 of 22 passes for 242 yards and three touchdowns on four drives, including a 75-yard TD pass to Marqise Lee on the game's first play from scrimmage.
He later threw another touchdown pass to Lee and then added a 1-yard scoring strike to Nelson Agholor. Tackling was not allowed in the scrimmage because USC coach Lane Kiffin was concerned about risking injuries with 20 Trojans already sidelined.
Kessler, who will be a sophomore in the fall, is locked in a three-way battle to replace four-year starting quarterback Matt Barkley.
Statistically, he clearly out-shined his competition Saturday. Rising sophomore Max Wittek was 12-of-17 passing for 145 yards and two touchdowns, but he also threw two interceptions, and freshman Max Browne was 7-of-11 passing for 80 yards with one TD and one pick.
"I think I put everything I had into spring ball," Kessler told reporters after the game.
Trojans coach Lane Kiffin said previously that he wouldn't name a starter until fall practice, and he reiterated that stance to reporters after the Spring Game.
CSUB water polo
No. 5-ranked California defeated the Cal State Bakersfield 14-7 in Mountain Pacific Sports Federation play.
Cal (16-5, 2-3) led 7-4 at halftime time before outscoring the Roadrunners 4-1 in the third quarter to break the game open. Ashley Young and Victoria Williams both scored three goals to lead the Golden Bears.
Jessica Browning, Taylor Hanson and Janelle Shelby each scored two goals for Bakersfield.
"We played well at times during the game," said CSUB coach Jason Gall in a press release. "But we are still playing tentative and haven't played to our full potential. We are going to keep trying to improve as we head into the final part of the season."
The Roadrunners (12-21, 0-5) conclude the regular season Saturday when they travel to No. 10 San Jose State for a noon match.
SAN DIEGO -- Cal State Bakersfield freshman pitcher Amber Mills tossed a two-hit shutout to lead the Roadrunners to a 2-0 victory over UC San Diego to salvage a split in Pacific Coast Softball Conference play.
The Toreros (18-20, 3-7) won the first game 3-2.
Mills had a no-hitter through five innings before Morgan Kurtz reached on an infield single. Mills finished with seven strikeouts and one walk to pick up her third win of the season.
The 'Runners (12-24, 7-7) jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the fourth inning when Shay Fryer led off with a single, was sacrificed to second and scored on a single by Amy Ricciardi.
CSUB added to its lead in the fifth when Adrianna Cardoza led off with a double, her third of the day, and came around to score on a single by Laura King to put the 'Runners up 2-0.
TAFT -- Merced College scored six runs in the fifth inning to build a 9-1 lead and crusied to a 12-4 victory over Taft in Central Valley Conference play.
The Cougars (9-20-1, 6-12) committed six errors and Merced (18-12, 12-6) collected 17 hits.
JC track and field
WALNUT-- Bakersfield College had strong showings at the Mount SAC relays.
Natalie O'Dwyer finished second in the women's 400 (56.83) and the women's 4x400 relay team finished third (3:59.09). Michael Norwood was the standout for the men, finishing second in the 200 (21.56) and third in the 100 (10.82).