UCSB Takes Advantage of Four UCLA Errors, Downs Bruins 4-3
May 9, 2006
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. -
UCSB (21-23, 6-9 in Big West) connected for just three hits on Tuesday against UCLA (25-20, 8-7 in Pac-10), but was able to take advantage of four costly Bruin errors to score four unearned runs and earn the 4-3 victory in non-conference play at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium.
Freshman Shane Carlson had the best offensive day for the Gauchos, finishing one-for-three with a run scored. The only other Gauchos to tally a hit were Big West Player of the Week Chris Valaika and junior Robbie Blauer.
Gaucho starter Bryan Fleming lasted three innings, surrendering two runs on five hits and a walk while striking out two. Head coach Bob Brontsema went to the bullpen in the fourth, handing the ball over to what proved to be a strong bullpen on Tuesday. The pen, composed of five pitchers in the game, combined for six innings pitched, giving up one run on three hits while striking out three batters. In fact, the Gaucho bullpen dominated the UCLA offense, retiring 13-consecutive Bruins between the fifth and ninth innings before giving up a base hit to senior Brett McMillan in the ninth. Junior Justin Aspegren threw one inning of perfect relief, including a strikeout, to earn his first win of the season.
Senior Josh Roenicke led the Bruin offense, batting two-for-three with an RBI. Bruin starter Jason Novak dealt three and two-thirds innings, surrendering one unearned run on one hit and two walks before handing the ball over to reliever Paul Oseguera. Oseguera contributed two and a third innings of no-hit ball before being replaced with Bruin Sunday starter, Tyson Brummett. Brummett threw two innings, giving up three unearned runs while striking out one to batter to earn the loss.
UCLA jumped out to an early two run lead with a run in the second and one in the third. After two quick outs in the second, Tim Murphy doubled to left centerfield to get the ball rolling for UCLA. On the ensuing play, Roenicke singled back up the box to plate Murphy and give UCLA the 1-0 advantage. The Bruins needed only one hit to score their second run in the third. Ryan Babineau singled to lead off the inning before moving to second base on a wild pitch. A groundout to second baseman Alden Carrithers moved him to third with one out; and on the next play, Jermaine Curtis flew out deep to right field for the sacrifice fly that plated the second Bruin run on the day.
UCSB got on the board in fourth, taking advantage of an error by Curtis at second base. Valaika led things off with a single before stealing second base. After a strikeout, Blauer reached on the error and Valaika scampered home on the play. Had the error not occurred, UCLA would have presumably ended the inning and stranded Valaika at third after the walk and the strikeout that followed. Instead, UCSB cut the Bruin lead to 2-1.
The Gauchos once again took advantage of Bruin errors, this time scoring three runs on one hit and three errors in the seventh. After a strikeout to start the inning, Austin Hogans reached on an error by shortstop Brandon Crawford. A single by Carlson put runners at the corners before another Crawford error allowed Mario Lewis to reach base and Hogans to score from third. With runners at first and second, Carrithers walked to load the bases for Valaika. Valaika hit a bouncing ball to short that was fielded and looked to be the start of an inning-ending double play. Instead, the force was made on Carrithers at second, but the throw to first was errant and got past the first baseman, allowing both Carlson and Lewis to score on the play.
UCLA would make things interesting in the ninth, posting one run on two hits against Gaucho closer Justin Segal. After a leadoff fly out for the first out of the inning, McMillan singled into centerfield to start the rally. Murphy flew out for the second out of the inning before pinch hitter Cody Decker had a long at bat resulting in a walk that put runners at first and second. Junior Will Penniall was summoned to pinch hit by Bruin skipper John Savage, and Penniall made the most of the at bat with an RBI single to right field to cut the lead to one run. Segal refused to give up another run, striking out the next batter he faced to earn his sixth save of the year.
UCSB will return to conference action this weekend when it visits Long Beach State for a three-game series starting on Friday at 6:30 p.m.