April 10, 2011
SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Given the chance to end the game for the Gauchos two innings earlier, Beck Wheeler wasn't going to let his second chance pass him by.
The senior chopped a single through the infield in the 13th inning to score Joe Wallace from second, giving UC Santa Barbara a 5-4 win on Sunday vs. Cal Poly. Wheeler's single allowed the Gauchos to win the three-game series vs. the Mustangs in UCSB's Big West opening weekend.
UCSB (14-12 overall, 2-1 Big West) finally had someone break through after putting runners in scoring position in the eighth, 10th, 11th and 12th innings against Mustangs' closer Jeff Johnson. But, each time Johnson wriggled his way out of trouble.
After Cal Poly (11-16, 3-3) tied the game with two runs in the eighth inning, Mark Haddow walked and stole second with one out. However, he was thrown out at third base after a pitch in the dirt didn't fully get past catcher Chris Hoo.
In the 10th Steven Moon came inches away from ending the game with a walk-off home run, but the ball hit the top of the right field wall and Moon stood on second with a two-out double before he was stranded there.
UCSB seemed to have its best chance to finish off the Mustangs in the 11th when Haddow led off with a double and Trevor Whyte was intentionally walked. Ryan Palermo's sacrifice bunt put runners on second and third before Johnson intentionally walked Wallace with one out to load the bases. Joe Winterburn struck out on a full count fastball and Wheeler hit a ground ball to second base to end the inning.
An inning later, in the 12th Ben Edelstein led off with a single and Moon's sacrifice put him at second. After a fly out Haddow and Whyte both walked to load the bases, but Palermo grounded out.
Then, in the 13th, Wallace reached on an infield single and moved to second on Winterburn's bunt before Wheeler chopped a 2-2 pitch into center field, past a diving Denver Chavez, allowing Wallace to score on a headfirst slide and setting off a celebration at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium.
"We played hard and Nick Capito gave us a great effort out of the bullpen," said Wheeler, whose walk-off single was the first by the Gauchos since a 10-9 win on March 20, 2010 vs. New Mexico. "We executed our bunts in the late innings and I knew I'd get the job done."
Capito pitched five shutout innings of relief, allowing just three hits while striking out five Mustang batters. He allowed just one runner past first base. Capito (2-2) helped relieve a Gaucho bullpen that had been heavily used and pitched in relief of Matt Vedo, who wasn't bad himself, going seven-plus innings, allowing five hits and three earned runs while striking out five.
Vedo gave way to Bryce Uhrig with two on and nobody out in the eighth inning, but J.J. Thompson's single brought in a run to make it 4-3 and Evan Busby's groundout tied the game.
UCSB scored once in the third and then three times in the fourth to take a 4-2 lead. Haddow led off the fourth inning with a double and Whyte's single put runners on the corners. After an out, Wallace hit a ground-rule double to score a run before Winterburn's base hit to left field plated both Whyte and Wallace.
UCSB got its first run without accruing a base hit. Wheeler walked, then caught a break when catcher Jordan Hadlock's throw bounced off shortstop Mike Miller's glove on a steal attempt, leaving Wheeler on second. A groundout put Wheeler on third before left fielder Jimmy Allen dropped Brandon Trinkwon's fly ball to bring in a run.
Haddow was 3-for-4 with a run scored and a stolen base and Wallace was 2-for-4 with two runs scored and an RBI.
"It was a good weekend to start Big West play and that will hopefully propel us into a strong weekend at Cal State Fullerton," said Haddow, who was 7-for-11 in the series with a home run, two doubles, four runs scored and four RBI. "We showed this weekend that we are a contender in the Big West and that we have all the tools to make a run."
Before the Gauchos play at Fullerton this weekend, the team will play a non-conference game at Cal State Northridge on Tuesday at 3 p.m. Fans can hear that game - and the remainder of UCSB baseball games - live online by clicking here
Wheeler's Walk-Off Hit Leads Gauchos Past Mustangs
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June 21, 2011 Connor Whalen Signs Deal With Milwaukee
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May 9, 2011 Vedo Named Big West Pitcher of the Week
May 8, 2011 Vedo Pitches Gauchos Past CSUN
May 7, 2011 Gauchos Drop Game at Northridge
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May 5, 2011 Trinkwon could be back on field by the weekend
May 4, 2011 Nick Capito: A Great Example
May 1, 2011 Gauchos Salvage Series With 9-5 Win at UCR
April 30, 2011 Baseball Team Falls 14-3 to UC Riverside
April 29, 2011 Gauchos Unable to Rally Late, Fall 5-3
April 28, 2011 Baseball Team Begins Longest Road Swing of Season
April 26, 2011 UCSB Rallies In Late Innings to Defeat CSUN, 6-4
April 25, 2011 Baseball Team Adds Game At UCLA
April 25, 2011 Gauchos Host Cal State Northridge on Tuesday at 3 p.m.
April 23, 2011 Gauchos Drop Series Finale to Long Beach State, 6-2
April 22, 2011 Davis, UCSB Offense Make Easy Work of Long Beach, 7-2
April 19, 2011 Haddow's Homer Ends Longest Game in UCSB History
April 18, 2011 Baseball Team Hosts Pepperdine on Tuesday
April 13, 2011 Gauchos Travel to No. 7 Fullerton for Weekend Series
April 12, 2011 UCSB Unable to Support Edgington in Defeat
April 11, 2011 UCSB Opens 4-Game Road Trip on Tuesday at CSUN
April 10, 2011 Wheeler's Walk-Off Hit Leads Gauchos Past Mustangs
April 8, 2011 Gauchos Drop Big West Opener
April 5, 2011 Baseball Games Broadcast on AM 1290 Starting on Friday
April 5, 2011 Gauchos Host Cal Poly for Three Games Starting Friday
April 3, 2011 Capito, On the Spot, Leads Gauchos Past San Jose State
April 2, 2011 San Jose State Scores Early to Defeat Gauchos
April 1, 2011 Spartans Rally to Thwart Gauchos
March 30, 2011 LMU Topples Gauchos, 6-4
March 28, 2011 Mark Haddow Named Big West Player of the Week
March 27, 2011 Trinkwon, Davis Lead Gauchos Past No. 23 Oregon State
March 26, 2011 Oregon State Chases Vedo Early, Beats Gauchos 11-5
March 25, 2011 No. 23 Beavers Top Gauchos
March 24, 2011 UCSB Opens Three-Game Series at Oregon State on Friday
March 22, 2011 Haddow's 4 RBI Powers Gauchos to 5-2 Win Over USC
March 21, 2011 UCSB Travels to USC on Tuesday, Oregon State This Weekend
March 20, 2011 Gauchos and Nevada Have Sunday's Game Rained Out
March 19, 2011 Vedo's Near No-No Helps Gauchos Sweep Doubleheader
March 18, 2011 Come Meet the Gaucho Baseball Team!
March 16, 2011 UCSB Hosts Nevada for Three Games This Weekend
March 13, 2011 No. 18 Rice Wins Pitching Duel
March 11, 2011 Gauchos Offense Shut Down by USF in 3-2 Loss
March 9, 2011 Gauchos Head to AT&T Park for Weekend Tournament
March 8, 2011 Loredo, Gauchos Edge USC, 3-2
March 7, 2011 UCSB Hosts USC on Tuesday at 2 p.m.
March 5, 2011 Gauchos Stymied by Sacramento State's Pitching
March 4, 2011 Meaux is Brilliant as Gauchos Defeat Hornets, 4-2
March 1, 2011 Waves Rally to Top Gauchos
February 27, 2011 Snow Cancels Sunday's Baseball Game
February 26, 2011 Washington State Sweeps Gauchos in Doubleheader
February 24, 2011 Gauchos Travel to Chilly Pullman to Face Cougars
February 22, 2011 Loredo is Terrific in Gauchos' Win Over Westmont
February 22, 2011 Haddow's back in the outfield, looking in
February 20, 2011 Gauchos Sweep La Salle in Baseball Doubleheader
February 19, 2011 Gauchos and La Salle Called Off After Two
February 18, 2011 Gauchos and La Salle Rained Out on Friday; Saturday Game at Noon
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February 16, 2011 Baseball Season Preview Day 3: The Infield
February 15, 2011 Baseball Season Preview Day 2: The Bullpen
February 14, 2011 Baseball Season Preview Day 1: The Outfield
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February 3, 2011 Valaika running a Reds' light into spring training
February 2, 2011 Meaux Honored as One of 50 Best in Nation
January 31, 2011 Zuanich has a blast at Uyesaka
January 26, 2011 Brontsema Wins Award at Annual Baseball Cooking Challenging
January 25, 2011 Gauchos Welcome Back Top Players for Alumni Weekend
January 25, 2011 UCSB Picked 6th in Annual Coaches Poll
January 24, 2011 Good guy Roenicke gets his due and a Brew
January 14, 2011 Baseball Season Tickets Now on Sale
December 22, 2010 UCSB Athletics Announces a 'Night With An Angel'
December 21, 2010 Join Us For A Night With An Angel
December 8, 2010 Two Former Gauchos Honored
November 19, 2010 Baseball Team Signs 7 Top Recruits
November 15, 2010 UCSB Baseball Releases Challenging 2011 Schedule
October 14, 2010 Baseball Team Among Top Recruiting Squads in Nation
October 8, 2010 Missed check-swing call didn't beat Rays; Young did
October 6, 2010 First postseason well worth wait for loyal Young
October 5, 2010 Make Joe Gardner the Class A Pitcher of the Year
September 27, 2010 Former Gaucho Michael Young Reaches Postseason For First Time
September 7, 2010 Gardner Picks Up Year-End All-Star Award
September 2, 2010 Valaika Found His Ecstacy in the Agony
August 25, 2010 Former Gaucho Chris Valaika Makes MLB Debut, Records First Hit
August 23, 2010 Business As Usual for Joe Gardner
August 17, 2010 Pitchers Meaux, Gelinas Will Return to UCSB
August 2, 2010 Eligio, Haddow Named to CCL All-League Squad