April 8, 2006
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -
After knotting the score at three at the end of the third inning, UCSB (14-14, 1-1) gave up ten runs in the next five innings en route to taking a 13-4 loss on Saturday in game two of a three-game conference series with UC Riverside (17-12, 1-1) at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium.
For the second straight day, junior Robbie Blauer led the Gauchos offensively. The Huntington Beach, Calif. native batted two-for-three with an RBI in the loss. Freshman Austin Hogans also had a standout day at the plate. Hogans connected for his first collegiate home run in his only at bat, a pinch-hit appearance in the eighth.
Gaucho starter Brian Tracy lasted three and a thirds innings en route to his fifth loss of the season. Tracy surrendered seven earned runs on five hits and four walks while striking out one batter. Anthony Martin came in relief for the Gauchos, pitching an inning and a third and giving up three runs on three hits and two walks while tallying two strikeouts. Freshman Matt Wade contributed three and a thirds innings out of the pen as well, surrendering two runs on seven hits and two walks while striking out three Highlanders. Senior Andrew Schoneberger came in to pitch the ninth for UCSB, dealing one inning of scoreless baseball while surrendering a walk and a hit and striking out a batter.
Highlander Aaron Grant led all hitters with a four-for-six day at the plate. Grant belted a double, scored five runs and drove in one on the day. Five other Highlanders tallied two hits on the day, including Aaron Wible's two-for-four day with a double, three RBI and a run scored.
Highlander starter Haley Winter tossed seven innings, surrendering three runs on six hits and three walks while punching out eight Gauchos en route to his third win of the season. Marc Rzepczynski and D.J. Smith both contributed one inning out of the bullpen for the Highlanders to seal the 13-4 victory.
UCR came out strong in the first inning, tallying two runs on one hit. After a leadoff walk and stolen base put a runner at second, Brian Steinmeyer was hit by a pitch to put runners at first and second. A groundout moved both runners up a base before Kyle Barratt singled home both runners to give the Highlanders the early 2-0 advantage.
After shutting down the Gaucho offense in the bottom of the first, UC Riverside was back at it again in the top of the second. With one out in the inning, Andrew Clay doubled to right centerfield. Drew Garcia flew out on the ensuing play, but Grant singled home Clay on the next play to put the Highlanders up by a count of 3-0.
UCSB would answer back to tie the game at three in the bottom of the third. After a quick out, Mario Lewis singled to centerfield to start the Gaucho threat. Brian Lee followed with a single of his own to put runners at the corners. After an Alden Carrithers walk loaded the bases, Winter walked Gump to force home the first Gaucho run. On the ensuing play, junior Chris Valaika hit a line shot sacrifice fly to score Lee from third. Blauer singled home the third and final run of the inning before being thrown out by Clay in left field trying to stretch the single into a double.
The Highlanders broke the game wide open in the fourth, scoring seven runs on four hits and an error. Clay led things off with a single to left field. After a Garcia fly out gave the Gauchos the first out of the inning, a single put runners at the corners. On the ensuing play, Tracy fielded a bunt and threw the ball past first baseman Blauer and down the line before the ball got wedged behind the tarps along the right field line. At the end of the play, runners were left at second and third and one run had scored. A walk to the next batter loaded the bases before a second walk pushed the second run of the inning across the plate. After the walk, Martin was called out of the bullpen to try to stop the Highlander threat. Upon entering the game, Martin walked Barratt to score the third run of the inning. On the very next play, Wible doubled to left centerfield to plate all three Highlander runners and give UCR the 9-3 advantage. Catcher Jeff Abney followed suit with a double of his own to plate Wible and score the seventh and final run of the inning for the Highlanders.
Riverside would push three more runs across in the next four innings to take a 13-3 lead into the bottom of the eighth. UCSB would plate a run in the bottom of the inning when Hogans connected on a fastball and drove it over the wall in right field for his first collegiate homer. Unfortunately for the Gauchos, that would be all the offense they could muster before falling to UC Riverside 13-4.
The Gauchos and Highlanders will complete this three-game series tomorrow when they meet at 1 p.m. in the rubber match at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium. Left-hander Jeff Braun is expected to take the mound for the Gauchos.