April 4, 2009
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Matt Valaika continued his hot hitting and Eric Oliver recorded an extra-base hit and RBI for the fifth straight game as the UC Santa Barbara baseball team defeated Pacific 9-6 on Saturday at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium.
The Gauchos, winners of three straight, improve to 17-8 overall, 3-2 in the Big West while Pacific falls to 10-14, 3-2.
Valaika, who is hitting .375 during his modest four-game hitting streak, went 2-for-4 with three RBI on Saturday, delivering a big blow with a two-run double in the seventh after Pacific had cut the score to 6-4. Valaika has driven in seven runs in four games this week and is tied for third on the team with 21 RBI.
Oliver homered for the second straight game, a towering shot to left-center in the third inning. It was his fifth homer of the season and followed Brian Gump's sacrifice fly to give UCSB a 2-0 lead. Oliver has knocked in 19 runs over his past 10 games and has 11 RBI during his five-game streak. He is second on the team with 28 RBI while his five homers are tied with Gump for second on the squad.
A four-run sixth inning snapped a 2-2 tie and made a winner out of Mario Hollands (3-2) who allowed five runs on eight hits in 6.2 innings. He struck out four and walked two. Zach Samuels pitched the final 2.1 innings, allowing a run on two hits to earn his second save.
Valaika's single drove in Gump with the first run of the sixth inning and Ryan Tregoning followed moments later with a two-run double to right-center. Marty Mullins' bloop single to center, which fell between Pacific's shortstop, centerfielder and second baseman, plated the Gauchos' fourth run of the frame.
Mullins finished 2-for-4 as seven Gaucho starters recorded at least one hit. Six different UCSB players also recorded an RBI as Santa Barbara scored nine runs for the second straight game and hit the mark for the third time in a row.
The Gauchos host the Tigers again on Sunday, with the game at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium and each beginning at 1 p.m. Mike Ford (3-2, 4.86 ERA) slated to start for the Gauchos. Pacific will counter with Hunter Carnevale (1-3, 6.23).
Cinco Packs are now available for baseball and softball with a mix-and-match option that allows fans to choose five games between either sport for one low price. And, with a purchase of a Cinco Pack, fans will receive a free Baseball Bingo! card for each baseball game they attend, giving them a chance to win a premier giveaway.
Single-game tickets and Cinco Packs are available by calling (805) 893-UCSB, by coming to the Ticket Office located inside the Intercollegiate Athletics building on campus or by clicking here.