Gauchos Sweep Stephen F. Austin Behind Boone One-Hitter

Rodney Boone took a no-hitter into the eighth inning to lead UCSB past SFA on Sunday afternoon. (Photo by Tony Mastres)
Rodney Boone took a no-hitter into the eighth inning to lead UCSB past SFA on Sunday afternoon. (Photo by Tony Mastres)

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – Freshman left-hander Rodney Boone took a no-hitter into the eighth inning and the No. 19 UC Santa Barbara baseball team completed the sweep with a 7-0 victory over Stephen F. Austin on Sunday afternoon at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium.

After a pair of close wins the last two days, the Gauchos (23-5) had a strong showing all around on Sunday as five players tallied multiple hits in the game, including a solo home run from Thomas Rowan to open the scoring in the fourth, his fourth homer of the year.

Throughout the day, all eyes were on Boone as he shut down the Lumberjacks through 7.1 innings, ultimately allowing just one hit and one walk while striking out three.  

In the top of the fourth, Tommy Jew made a spectacular diving catch to keep the no-hitter intact, and Rowan's blast in the bottom half of the frame awoke the Gauchos' offense. UCSB added another run later in the inning on an RBI single by Jason Willow to bring home Andrew Martinez.

The Gauchos added two more runs in the fifth after Tevin Mitchell and Eric Yang led off the inning with back-to-back singles. SFA made an error to load the bases with nobody out and Rowan drove in another run with a sac fly to score Mitchell. Martinez followed with an RBI single to score Yang, giving UCSB a 4-0 lead.

Santa Barbara stranded the bases loaded in both the fifth, sixth and eighth inning, and stranded 13 runners total.

Boone continued to chop down the Lumberjacks until, with one out in the top of the eighth, Skyler Black broke up the no-no with a bloop single to right field. With 104 pitches thrown on the afternoon, Boone left the game to a standing ovation.

Michael McGreevy came on in relief and finished the inning with a strikeout and a groundball.

The Gaucho offense went right back to it in the bottom of the eighth as Mitchell started things off with a one-out triple. Yang followed with a single to right field to drive in Mitchell, making it 5-0. Three consecutive walks to Armani Smith, Martinez, and Willow resulted in two more runs for UCSB, contributing to the final score of 7-0.

Joshua Candau closed out the game with a one-two-three inning including a strikeout.

Rowan and Willow both finished 2-for-3 with two RBIs while Martinez, Mitchell and McClain O'Connor all went 2-for-4. Yang finished 2-for-5 to round out the Gauchos with multi-hit games.

SFA starter Jaxon Covington (3-3) picked up the loss after the Gauchos jumped on him for four runs on 10 hits through five innings.

The Gauchos secured their fourth three-game series sweep of the season with the win and are back in action this Tuesday, Apr. 9 for a midweek tilt at Pepperdine at 3:00 p.m.