February 22, 2014

Sixteen Hits Not Enough as Gauchos Drop Middle Game of San Jose Series

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Despite collecting 16 hits as a team on Saturday afternoon – a mark that was bettered only once last year – UC Santa Barbara couldn't overcome a late offensive flurry from San Jose State, falling to the Spartans 7-5 at Municipal Stadium.

The loss broke an eight game winning streak against the Spartans which dated back to the 2011 season. It was UCSB's (2-1) first loss of the season, while SJSU moved to 2-5.

All but one UCSB starter recorded a hit in the loss and six had multiple knocks, highlighted by junior rightfielder Scott Quinlan's 3-5 day. Joey Epperson, Peter Maris, Robby Nesovic, Cameron Newell, and Andrew Calica all had two hits apiece.

In a reversal from last night's affair, San Jose State was able to come out on top due to some clutch hitting late in the game. In fact, the Spartans were able to put a run across in five of their last six offensive innings. The home team erased deficits of 2-1 and 3-2 before plating a pair of runs in the bottom of the eighth to break a 5-5 tie and even the series.

The game winning charge was aided by three UCSB walks that loaded the bases. Sophomore righty Kenny Chapman came in with one out to try and extinguish the rally, striking out the first batter he faced on three pitches before allowing a two-RBI single to Alec de Watville. De Watville finished the day with a game-high four RBIs.

The Gauchos opened the game's scoring in the top of the third. Junior shortstop Peter Maris picked up his first RBIs of the season with a two-run double down the right field line. That rally was made possible by senior catcher Jackson Morrow, who worked a full-count walk with two outs and nobody on to extend the inning.

Nesovic gave the Gauchos their second lead of the day with an RBI single in the fifth that made the score 3-2.

Freshman infielder Billy Fredrick had a memorable debut for the Gauchos, swatting an RBI triple into right field as a pinch hitter in the eighth inning. He would later score on an Epperson sac fly to make it 5-5.

Shane Bieber received a no-decision in his collegiate debut. The freshman righty from Laguna Hills, Calif. allowed two earned runs over eight hits in five innings on the bump. His first frame as a Gaucho couldn't have gone much better, as he retired the side in order on eight pitches.

Junior Greg Mahle (1-1) was saddled with the loss after allowing two runs in 1.1 innings pitched. James Glawe earned the win for San Jose, tossing 1.1 scoreless innings. He was the only Spartan pitcher to appear without allowing a run. Starter Jonathan Hernandez didn't survive the fifth inning, surrending three runs and seven hits in 4.1 innings of action.

Sophomore flamethrower Dylan Hecht will take the ball for UCSB in tomorrow's rubber match with the Spartans, opposing southpaw Jace Puckett. First pitch is scheduled for 1:00 p.m.