UCSB Takes Rubber-Match Against Bulldogs 8-3

Feb. 29, 2004

Box Score

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Sophomore right-hander Michael Martin improved to 4-0 and the UC Santa Barbara baseball team took the rubber-match of this weekend's three game series against Fresno State 8-3 on Sunday afternoon. After pounding out 24 hits on Saturday, the Gauchos erupted for 14 more hits as Martin held the Bulldogs to seven hits over his 6.2 innings of work.

UCSB junior catcher Taylor Vogt launched his third home run of the year in the Gauchos' three-run sixth inning and freshman shortstop Chris Valaika continued his hot-hitting with a 2-for-3 day at the plate and two RBI. Second baseman Chris Malec extended his torrid RBI streak with two more runs batted in. The junior drove in nine during the three-game series and ten during four total games this week. First baseman Bill Rowe, who homered and drove in three RBI yesterday, finished 2-for-4 with two RBI and a run scored.

Fresno State southpaw Brandon Miller (1-1) took the loss after allowing five runs (two earned) on eight hits in his 4.2 innings of work. First baseman David Gomez went 2-for-4 while catcher Brandon Marcelli and third baseman Christian Vitters each contributed an RBI for the Bulldogs. Vitters poked his third home run of the year in the second.

Martin kept his perfect record in tact with 6.2 effective innings, allowing the seven hits and three runs. He struck out one and walked four.

The Gauchos took their first early lead of the series in the first as Malec plated designated hitter David Figoni with a one-out sacrifice fly. Figoni had tripled earlier in the inning.

Fresno State scored two in the second with the help of a Marcelli sacrifice fly and Vitters' solo shot.

UCSB tied it up in the second when Valaika picked up his first RBI of the day with a single to right, scoring Rowe.

In the fifth, UCSB took the lead for good as it posted three runs on four hits with the help of an error. With one out and the bases load, Rowe sent a seeing-eye base hit through the right-side scoring Malec and senior third baseman Nate Sutton. One batter later, Valaika beat out a slow roller to shortstop for an RBI single, his second of the day.

Vogt's two-run shot and a Malec RBI ground out gave the Gauchos three more runs in the sixth and left them with an 8-2 lead. The Bulldogs plated one more run in the seventh but relievers Rich Sorenson and Aaron Jones combined to pitch a perfect final 2.1 innings for the Gauchos and keep the score unchanged.

The Gauchos raised their team batting average another five points to a season high .316 mark. UCSB also scored a three-game high 36 runs over the weekend.

UCSB is now 8-5 while the Bulldogs fall to 6-9.

The Gauchos travel to Westwood to take on UCLA at 3 p.m. on Tuesday.

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