MONROE, La.- UC Santa Barbara (1-0) came out of the gates hot on Thursday at the Mardi Gras Classic, shutting out Grambling State (0-1), 6-0 in its 2013 season opener.
UCSB scored five of its runs in the third inning, starting with sophomore Shelby Wisdom's two-run single to give them the lead. The Gauchos kept pouring it on from there with singles from senior Keilani Jennings and junior Jessica Reichner, eventually stringing together seven hits and batting around the order.
Freshman Arianna Palomares started in right field and went 3-for-3 in her debut as a Gaucho. She was one of five players with a multi-hit performance, along with sophomore second baseman Kathryn Pilpil, who also went 3-for-3 with two runs batted in.
Wisdom was untouchable in her first start of the season since winning Big West Freshman of the Year honors last year. She limited the Tigers to only two hits and one walk while striking out eight over a brilliant five innings of work.
After giving up her first hit in the second inning to Tigers' second baseman Jasmyn Dunning, Wisdom settled down and put away eight straight batters on the way to her first win of the year.
Freshman Alex Pingree closed out the final two innings for the Gauchos on defense. She allowed only one hit and no walks in her first start for UCSB.
The Gauchos continue their pursuit of a strong start to the 2013 season with a double header tomorrow against Wichita State and Louisiana Monroe at the Mardi Gras Classic.