BERKELEY, CALIF. – In its final pre-conference tune-up game on Wednesday afternoon, UCSB (18-15) had its six-game winning streak snapped by Cal (21-8) in a 5-1 road defeat.
"Cal did a great job putting pressure on our defense with their speed and we didn't quite bring our A-game," head coach Brie Galicinao said. "Offensively, we just couldn't make adjustments and [Cal pitcher Zoe Conley] mixed speeds and zones."
Junior outfielder Jessica Johnston led the way with two hits on a 2-3 mark at the plate, while sophomore second baseman Sierra Altmeyer added one hit, one RBI and one run on yet another solo home run.
After the Bears held a one-run lead through one inning, Altmeyer's swing tied things up at 1-1 in the top of the second. The San Diego native is now tied for the Big West lead with seven home runs for the year, five of which have been solo homers.
Johnston's two hits would come in the fourth and sixth innings, both resulting in doubles. The junior now moves past teammate Alyssa Diaz (12) for the most doubles in the conference (13). As a team, UCSB now has 15 more doubles (52) than any other program in the Big West.
Despite the Gauchos' defense holding the Bears under their season average with seven hits, the home side managed to add four more runs over the course of the game, including two in the bottom of the second to take back the lead. Cal would eventually cap things off with a solo home run by freshman Bradie Fillmore in the bottom of the sixth, making it 5-1.
Sophomore pitcher Veronika Gulvin (12-7) finished with one strikeout on the day. The loss ends a run of four straight wins as UCSB's starter in the circle.
The Gauchos will now shift their attention to this Saturday and Sunday, when they open up Big West play at Cal Poly.
"This preseason has been great preparation going into the weekend since we know Cal Poly will put the ball in play," Galicinao said. "We'll have to adjust offensively to Cal Poly's pitching staff."