April 13, 2007

UCSB Balances its Books With 14-9 Big West Win Over Pacific

April 13, 2007

Box Score

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - After falling behind 2-0, UC Santa Barbara scored 13 unanswered runs in the first five innings on Friday and seemed to be clicking on all cylinders offensively as it posted a 14-9 victory over Pacific (9-26-1), improving to 13-18, 2-2 in Big West Conference play.

Pacific jumped out to a 2-0 lead, striking early on an RBI double by junior designated hitter Noah St. Urbain, but the Gauchos came right back with three in the bottom of the 1st . Left fielder Mike Zuanich knocked in two and then center fielder Chris Fox had a two out RBI single to give UCSB a lead that it never relinquished .

The Gauchos added five in the second on a two run bomb by Mario Lewis, an RBI walk to catcher Chris McMurray, and a two-run single by freshman second baseman Matt Valaika. The home run by Mario Lewis was his second homer of the season and also his second in the last two games as he hit a grand slam in Saturday's 9-8 loss at UC Riverside.

The Gauchos added three more in the third inning when McMurray knocked in another and first baseman Robbie Blauer contributed an RBI single. Blauer went 2-4 with an RBI and three runs scored, continuing his stellar season. Blauer came into the game hitting .397 and ended the game at .400.

The Tigers, who hadn't scored since the first inning, posted five in the eighth when second baseman Zach Chamberlin hit a three run shot to right. They then added two more in the ninth on a two run shot to left center by right fielder Greg Murray, but it was too little too late as they were in an eleven run hole.

Junior Chuck Huggins struggled with his control, but overall he had another solid outing, going five innings and allowing only five hits and two runs, to improve his record to 5-0 on the season. He did struggle a bit with control, walking six Pacific hitters but he did a good job staying out of jams. Huggins continues to be the most consistent Gaucho pitcher this season.

Matt Wade came in to pitch a scoreless sixth. Justin Aspegren pitched the seventh allowing four runs and walking three. Kyle Brown gave-up one run on two hits in the eighth, and senior Brian Tracy allowed a run on one hit and two walks in the ninth.

Tiger Freshman starter David Rowse had a rough day on the hill, lasting only 1.1 innings and allowing eight earned runs on five hits while walking three.

The teams play two more times this weekend, at 1:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday afternoon at Caesar Uyesaka stadium. Tomorrow the Gauchos are set to throw freshman right-hander Mike Ford (1-1, 5.45 ERA) against Tigers' junior right-hander, Jason Haar (1-2, 4.50 ERA).