March 4, 2011
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Jesse Meaux was dominant on Friday, striking out a career-high eight - without walking a batter - as the Gauchos defeated Sacramento State, 4-2, in the opener of the three-game series.
Meaux, tabbed as one of the top 50 seniors by Baseball America, pitched 8.1 innings and allowed six hits - five of them singles - and two earned runs. The senior from Glendale, Calif. retired 17 in a row from the end of the second inning until Hunter Adrian's solo home run with one out in the eighth inning. He threw just 105 pitches on the day.
Meaux ran into a touch of trouble in the ninth as three straight singles loaded the bases with nobody out. Meaux got Derrick Chung to fly out, which scored a run, before being lifted for Connor Whalen.
The lefty walked Kirby Young on five pitches to load the bases and Greg Davis relieved him. Davis got got Trevor Paine to ground into a 4-6-3 double play to end the game.
"Jesse was dominant for eight innings," UCSB head coach Bob Brontsema said. "Sacramento State did a good job of being aggressive in the ninth, but Greg came in to a very difficult situation and handled it like the veteran that he is."
Meaux's eight strikeouts are one better than his previous mark which he set last February vs. Westmont. The right-hander lowered his ERA by more than two runs with his successful outing.
The Hornets' Tanner Mendonca was matching Meaux pitch-for-pitch for much of the game, though. UCSB (4-3) scratched out a run in the fourth on Dan Camou's bases-loaded infield single.
Camou finished 2-for-4 with two RBI while Ben Edelstein and Williams each had a pair of hits.
The Gauchos and Hornets resume their three-game series on Saturday at 1 p.m. as UCSB RHP Matthew Vedo (1-1, 5.59 ERA) will face RHP Sam Kuykendall (0-1, 3.38 ERA).
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