SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – Redshirt sophomore right-handed pitcher Joe Record logged seven dominant innings in a breakout start while sophomore outfielder Josh Adams hit his first career home run and had four RBIs as the Gauchos finished off a weekend sweep of San Francisco with a 7-3 victory on Sunday afternoon at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium.
Earning a start for the first time in his career after two injury-riddled seasons at UCSB (4-0), Record allowed just a single earned run and three hits while striking out five. Once he got into a rhythm, he was near unhittable, retiring the final 14 batters he faced after picking off USF (0-4) leadoff hitter Harrison Bruce in the third inning.
"Joe was fantastic today, I thought he did a great job," said UCSB head coach Andrew Checketts. "That second inning could have gone sideways for a lot of guys in their first start, but he got out of it and then stepped on the gas pedal big time. When a pitcher is suffocating the strike zone like he was, it allows the defense to stay sharp and you saw that today."
With Record shutting down the Dons and putting up zeroes on the top half of the scoreboard, the UCSB offense didn't have to do very much, but the Gaucho hitters still did their part at the plate by racking up nine hits and scoring a run against every USF pitcher to enter the game except Mack Meyer, who only faced one batter.
"I thought our hitters did a good job all weekend," said Checketts. "It was good to see Adams get rewarded for some quality swings."
Adams did the majority of the run-producing for UCSB, scorching a two-run single off the glove of Dons shortstop Nico Giarratano in the fifth inning before putting the game to bed with a no-doubt big fly to right-center in the seventh, the first home run of his career.
San Francisco was actually the first team on the board on Sunday – scoring just a single run out of a bases loaded, nobody out situation in the second inning – so the Gauchos had to manufacture a pair of runs to take the lead.
UCSB tied the game in the bottom half of the second without even recording a hit, as freshman outfielder Michael McAdoo continued his impressive debut weekend by reaching via a hit by pitch, advancing to third on a wild pitch and a sacrifice bunt, and then scoring on a Clay Fisher sac fly.
The Gauchos would take the lead for good an inning later on a spectacular individual effort from junior center fielder Andrew Calica. Leading off the inning, Calica ripped a line drive over USF first baseman Manny Ramirez Jr.'s head and down the right field line. Attempting to cut the ball off to keep Calica from going to second, Dons right fielder Brady Bate instead had the ball kick off the heel of his glove allowing the runner to head towards third. Things got even worse from there for USF, as the relay throw to third skipped out of play and let Calica score.
Elsewhere for the Gauchos, sophomore second baseman JJ Muno had a pair of singles, giving him hits in all four of UCSB's games so far this season. Calica was also walked three times and thus ended the weekend having reached base 11 times.
UCSB will look to remain unbeaten this week as they host the St. Mary's Gaels at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium on Tuesday afternoon before traveling to San Diego for the inaugral Tony Gwynn Classic tournament starting on Friday.