SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – Stevie Ledesma hurled a 6-hit shutout and UC Santa Barbara supported him with three home runs in a 12-0 rout of visiting CSUN on Saturday afternoon.
Ledesma (6-2) needed just 96 pitches to toss the first complete game and shutout of his career. He struck out seven, all in the last seven innings, and did not walk a batter. He faced the minimum number of batters over the game's final five innings, including four 1-2-3 innings.
"It feels good," Ledesma said. "Everything worked for me and I was just pumping strikes. This is the first time that I haven't had any walks, so this feels really good."
Ledesma's shutout was the first complete game shutout by a UCSB pitcher since Shane Bieber blanked CSUN 1-0 on April 15, 2016.
The Gauchos (22-19-1 overall, 7-7 Big West) made their starting pitchers life a little easier as they jumped on the Matadors (20-25, 8-9) early and often.
With one out in the bottom of the first, Clay Fisher hit a line drive over the glove of a leaping Alvaro Rubalcaba, CSUN's shortstop, and legged it into a double. Tommy Jew then banged a single to left field scoring a hustling Fisher and moving over to second on the throw to the plate. Jew went to third on a ground out by Thomas Rowan and scored when first baseman Kevin Riley couldn't handle a bounced throw by Rubalcaba on a grounder by Cole Mueller.
The Gauchos tacked on three more markers in the bottom of the second. Jason Willow singled to start things but was out when Marcos Castanon followed with a fielder's choice. Armani Smith then laced a single to left field and Andrew Martinez belted his team-leading sixth home run to left center field and the score was 5-0.
Ledesma walked a tightrope in the top of the fourth. Nolan Bumstead and Riley each singled to left on the first pitch they saw, but Ledesma induced Riley Conlan to strike out swinging after fouling off four pitches, and Alex Hill grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning.
Fisher made it a 6-0 UCSB lead in the fourth when he crushed an Isaiah Nunez offering over the left center field fence for his second home run of the campaign.
Santa Barbara blew the game open in its half of the fifth. Facing freshman reliever Wesley Moore, Rowan walked to lead things off and was followed by a Mueller single up the middle. Michal McAdoo followed with a mammoth home run to dead center field. McAdoo's second home run of the season registered an exit velocity of 112 MPH and measured 415 feet.
"I didn't know it was going out when I hit it, but it felt good," McAdoo said. "I was looking for something up and when I got it, I was ready."
The Gauchos got a trio of insurance runs in the eighth to extend the final score to 12-0.
McAdoo, Jew, Fisher and Armani Smith each had a pair of hits for the Gauchos. In addition to his home run, Fisher had a double. Notable also was the first career hit by freshman Ben Fariss who pinch hit in the bottom of the ninth inning.
UCSB and CSUN will play the final game of their three-game Big West series on Sunday afternoon at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium with first pitch set for 1:00 p.m. Chris Clement is slated to start for the Gauchos with Matt Acosta penciled in for CSUN.