SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – College baseball has produced a modern-era 17 no-hitters so far in the 2018 season, and UC Santa Barbara fell victim to that trend on Thursday afternoon at Caesar Uyesaka as Cal State Fullerton ace Colton Eastman kept the Gauchos out of the hit column to lead his team to a Big West-opening 3-0 win.
Eastman and the Titans (10-13, 1-0 Big West) weren't perfect, as the Gauchos (9-12-1, 0-1) had six baserunners on via a walk, two hit by pitches, and three errors. Down 3-0 at that point, UCSB even mounted a threat in the ninth and got the game-tying run to the plate after Clay Fisher was hit in the back with a stray curveball to put runners on first and second with one out.
However, Eastman recovered and got the Gauchos to bounce two ground balls to the right side for the last two outs of the contest. Eastman's no-no was the first for Cal State Fullerton since the 2014 season and the fifth overall for the program. Thursday represented the first time UCSB has been no-hit since the 1967 season.
The gem from Eastman overshadowed a solid collective pitching effort from freshman lefty Jack Dashwood and junior right-hander Kevin Chandler, who teamed up to allow just one earned run over the course of the game.
The Titans, whose 10 hits for the game were all singles, created all the offense they would need in the second inning, making the Gauchos pay for a leadoff error by putting together three singles in quick succession around a sac bunt to bring in a pair. Brett Borgongno singled in another run in the sixth to cap off a three-hit, two-RBI day and provide CSF with an insurance run.
UCSB and Cal State Fullerton resume their series on Friday afternoon at 3:00 p.m. at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium.