UCSB Heads North for Three-Game Series at Future Big West Opponent UC Davis

UCSB Heads North for Three-Game Series at Future Big West Opponent UC Davis

April 7, 2005

The Schedule
Games No. 31, 32, 33 at UC Davis
Friday, April 8, 2005 at 2:30 p.m. (PST)
Saturday, April 9, 2005 at 1:00 p.m. (PST)
Sunday, April 10, 2005 at 1:00 p.m. (PST)
All games played at Dobbins Baseball Complex • Davis, Calif.

2005 Record
After improving to 14-12, by winning six out of eight games, including five in a row, UC Santa Barbara dropped its first Big West Conference series of the season last week, as Pacific won two out of three from the Gauchos at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium. UCSB rebounded on Tuesday, April 5, recording an easy 20-6 victory over cross-town opponent Westmont College. The Gauchos enter this weekend's non-conference series at UC Davis with an overall record of 16-14, and a Big West mark of 1-2.

Keeping Track
The three-game series at UC Davis will not be broadcast on KIST 1340-AM in Santa Barbara, nor as part of UCSB's College Sports Pass on the internet. The series will, however, be available on Gametracker so that fans can get a pitch-by-pitch update of all three games. To access Gametracker, which is free, go to www.UCSBGauchos.com, and negotiate your way to the UCSB baseball schedule. The link will be there. Following the three-game series at Davis, all of the remainder of UCSB's baseball games will be carried on both KIST 1340-AM, and on the internet.

A Look at Last Weekend
Santa Barbara opened up its first weekend of Big West Play by losing a three-set to Pacific last weekend. Sandwiched between a 7-4 loss on Friday and a 6-1 loss on Sunday, the Gauchos over came a five-run deficit and defeated the Tigers 7-6 in dramatic fashion to earn their first Big West victory of the season. In the the series opener, junior starting pitcher Michael Martin (3-2) dropped his second game of the 2005 campaign by allowing nine hits and five earned runs i n 7.0 innings of work. Senior right fielder Matt Wilkerson went 3-for-5 with a home run, a double, three RBI and one run scored. Senior shortstop Chris Malec also went 3-for-5 with a one RBI and two runs scored. In Saturday's game two, junior starting hurler Steve Morlock (3-4), making the start for an ill Andy Graham, tossed 5.2 innings allowed five hits and six runs (five earned) while striking out two. Down 6-1, the Gauchos put together their largest come from behind victory of the season. Santa Barbara cut the lead down to two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning as the Pacific pitching staff struggled to locate the strike zone, walking three and hitting two UCSB batters. In the bottom of the ninth inning, Santa Barbara got its first win in its last at bat by posting three runs off Tiger closer Josh Schmidt. Junior first baseman Bill Rowe came up with a clutch two-out single just over the Pacific shortstop, tying the score by driving in Malec who was standing on second base. The Gauchos went on to win the game as Pacific left fielder Jake Ross, inserted for defensive purposes, over threw his third baseman, allowing Wilkerson to come around and score UCSB's final run. Sophomore relief pitcher Justin Segal helped UCSB stay in the game by hurling three scoreless innings. Senior Loren Fraser (2-2) was credited with his second win by making one pitch and retiring the batter in the top of the ninth inning. In the rubber-match on Sunday, sophomore starter Andy Graham (4-2) dropped his second game despite looking very strong on the mound by tossing 6.2 innings and allowing only two earned runs while striking out a season-high nine Tigers. The Gauchos lone run came as freshman designated hitter Matt Aidem scored on a fly ball dropped by the Pacific center fielder Ramon Glasgow. The ball was hit by senior left fielder Matt Stevens.

Gauchos Bounce Back Against Wesetmont
UCSB defeated its cross-town Westmont for the second time this season on Tuesday, April 5th. With a 20-6 win, the Gauchos took no prisoners as they scored nine runs in the bottom of the first inning and a season-high 20 runs in the game. On February 15, 2005, the UCSB defeated the Warriors 14-2 at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium.

The Brontsema File
2005 marks the 24th year of head coach Bob Brontsema's involvement in the UCSB baseball program. He is now in his 12th season as head coach, after ten years as an assistant and two as a player. With a 6-1 victory over San Jose State on Sunday Feb. 13, Brontsema became the third coach in school history to collect career victory No.300. The Gaucho skipper currently owns a record of 312-304. He has been selected Big West Coach of the Year twice, in 1996 when he guided the Gauchos to a 32-20 record and an at-large spot in the NCAA Tournament, and in 2001, when he led the team to a 40-17 mark and another NCAA tourney berth. The .701 winning percentage in 2001 was the best in school history. In 2004, Brontsema's Gauchos posted the second-most overall wins in his career as head coach, going 33-21. Milestone dates in Brontsema's coaching career include win no. 100 in 1997, win no. 200 in 2001, and win no. 300 in 2005.

Probable Starters
C - Matt Kalafatis - Has started 28 of the team's 30 games at catcher.
1B - Bill Rowe - Batting .308 with runners in scoring position.
2B - Alden Carrithers - Leads the team with a .492 on-base percentage.
SS - Chris Malec - Leads the team with nine doubles and 38 hits.
3B - David Figoni - Tied for team-lead with 38 hits.
LF - C.J. Cook - Has 11 hits, six runs scored and two doubles.
CF - Matt Emerick - Had three hits and three RBI in Tuesday victory over Westmont.
RF - Matt Wilkerson - Team leading seven homers and 31 RBI.
DH - Matt Aidem - Paces the team with a .375 batting average.

Armed And Ready: The Pitching Rotation
Despite dropping its opening Big West series to Pacific, pitching coach Tom Myers has elected to go with the same pitching rotation he used last weekend. In Friday's series opener, junior right-hander Michael Martin (3-2, 4.47 ERA), boasting a team-hight 54.1 innings pitched, will get the start against UC Davis. On Saturday, sophomore Andy Graham (4-2, 3.38 ERA) will be looking to repeat last Sunday's nine-strikeout performance. In Sunday's series finale, junior Steve Morlock (3-4, 6.06 ERA) is penciled-in to make his team-leading 10th start of the campaign.

RBI Machine
By tallying three RBI in last Friday's 7-4 loss to Pacific, senior right fielder Matt Wilkerson moved into a tie for the sixth slot on the all-time UCSB RBI. Wilkerson's total of 166 RBI moves him into a tie with former Gaucho and San Francisco Giants shortstop Erik Johnson. Wilkerson is currently batting .330, with team highs of seven home runs and 31 RBI this season. His 31 RBI is also tops in the Big West Conference. The Santa Margarita, Calif. native needs to drive in 11 more teammates to catch Chad Peshke at 177 RBI.

Malec Sneaks Onto RBI List
With 19 RBI this season, senior shortstop Chris Malec has now moved into the 10th spot on the Gauchos' all-time RBI list with 150. Malec needs eight RBI to catch former UCSB outfielder Wynter Phoenix who is sitting int the ninth position with 158. In UCSB's first Big West series last weekend, Malec caught fire. For the set, he was 8-for-13 (.615) had one home run, one double, one RBI and three runs scored. For the season, the Laguna Niguel, Calif., native is hitting .347 with 38 hits, a team-high nine doubles, four home runs, and 62 total bases.

G Is For Graham, And Good
Sophomore starting hurler Andy Graham has looked impressive on the mound this season for the Gauchos. Although he dropped his last start against Pacific on April 3, Graham was solid, tossing 6.2 innings, allowing four hits and only two earned runs while striking out a season-high nine batters. In his previous two starts, the Rolling Hills, Calif., native went 2-0 with a 2.73 ERA. So far this season, Graham's only bad outing was against Oregon State. Excluding that performance, Graham is 4-1 with a 2.66 ERA in six starts.

Never Say Die
In Saturday's 7-6 victory of Pacific, UCSB earned its first Big West Conference victory in dramatic fashion. The Gauchos overcame a five-run deficit (the largest of the season), scoring three runs in the bottom of the ninth inning marking thier first victory in a final at-bat this season. What was particularly impressive was the fact that Santa Barbara did it off of Pacific closer Josh Schmidt, who until that point looked very impressive, posting six saves and a 0.80 ERA this season. The Gauchos seem to have Schmidt's number, in two of his last three save opportunities against UCSB Schmidt has blown two three-run leads.

Scouting the Aggies
Entering Friday's match-up, UC Davis holds a 16-12 record, having just lost to San Francisco on Tuesday, 11-2. Second baseman Daniel Descalso leading the Aggies with a .365 batting average, 42 hits, 24 RBI and 51 total bases. Shortstop Brandon Oliver is batting .339 and has a team-leading 24 runs scored. Friday's starting pitcher Dave McKae has a 5-1 record with a 2.34 ERA in eight games started this season. In his most recent start against Sacrament State on Apirl 1, McKae picked-up the win by tossing 8.0 scoreless innings. On the hill Saturday, Michael Potter ( 2-3, 5.30 ERA) will be looking for his third win in eight starts this season. In Sunday's series finale Vince Decoito is penciled-in to get the start for the Ags. In seven starts so far this season, DeCoito is 3-2 with 2.89 ERA. UC Davis will enter the Big West Conference for baseball in two seasons.

Series Record
The all-time series between UCSB and UC Davis is tied 1-1. The last time these two teams match-up was in the 1960's. Davis won the first meeting in 1964 and UCSB returned the favor in 1966.