Feb. 10, 2004
NORTHRIDGE, Calif. - The UC Santa Barbara baseball team knocked off Cal State Northridge 10-7 in a wild non-conference matchup Tuesday afternoon at Matador Stadium. After being down by as many as five runs, the Gauchos used an eight-run eighth inning to propel their record to 3-1.
Junior right-hander Loren Fraser, who gave up one run in his one inning of relief, picked up his first collegiate victory and senior catcher Taylor Vogt led the way at the plate, going 3-for-5 with two runs scored and two RBI. Those two RBI were delivered with a one-out bases loaded single in the eighth to bring UCSB to within two.
Freshman Andy Graham made his collegiate debut for UCSB on the mound. The right-hander lasted a strong six innings, giving up give five runs, all via the long ball.
After the Gauchos got on the board first in their half of the second with a Matt Emerick RBI fielder's choice, the Matadors proceeded to score five unanswered runs with three home runs. In the bottom of the second, second baseman Raymond Ravago launched a two-run shot to left and was followed by first baseman Michael Paulk's two-run shot in the fourth. A one-out John Voita solo home run made the score 5-1.
Fraser's unearned run gave Northridge the 6-1 advantage heading into the fateful eighth inning.
Up until then, four different CSUN hurlers had combined to hold UCSB to just the one run and five hits.
Then the wheels came off for the Matadors and UCSB chalked up an eight-spot to take the final lead of the game.
Cal State Northridge right-hander Cody Campbell started the eighth inning but only recorded one out as he walked three of the four batters he faced. One of those batters was senior third baseman Nate Sutton, who scored the first run of the rally on a wild pitch.
CSUN closer Phil Polanco relieved Campbell but was not able to stop the bleeding. After hitting the first batter he faced, sophomore first baseman Bill Rowe, Polanco allowed the two-RBI single to Vogt and then served up a two-RBI double to freshman Chris Valaika. After pinch-hitter C.J. Cook walked, Emerick sent a chopper up the middle which was mishandled by Matador shortstop Jesse Perez, allowing Vogt and Valaika to score and giving the Gauchos a 7-6 lead. Polanco then intentionally walked Sutton before surrendering another two-RBI single to designated hitter Greg Powers for the final two runs of the inning.
Gaucho right-hander Nate Holguin allowed one more Matador run in the bottom of the eighth inning but CSUN could not even muster a baserunner against UCSB closer Aaron Jones, who picked up his second save in as many games.
The UCSB offense finished the day with 11 hits, compared to the Matadors' seven. Vogt and Powers each contributed two hits apiece while Emerick added two more RBI to his team high six.
Second baseman Chris Malec's second inning fielding error was the first for the Gauchos in 2004. The team played errorless in its season-opening series at San Diego State last weekend.
Cal State Northridge's record drops to 4-3 with the loss.