April 20, 2010
LOS ANGELES - Mike O'Neill scored on a wild pitch in the ninth inning, capping a furious comeback as USC defeated UC Santa Barbara, 9-8, on Tuesday at Dedeaux Field.
The Gauchos stormed out to an 8-0 lead only to see USC rally against UCSB's bullpen for the come-from-behind win. The Trojans (16-20 overall) scored four runs in the ninth inning against David Meals - on just two hits - to surprise the Gauchos (16-15).
UCSB scored three times in the first, once each in the second and third innings, twice in the fourth and once more in the sixth to take an 8-0 lead and looked to be on its way to an easy win. However, once UCSB starter Greg Davis was out of the game, the Trojans scored a run in the sixth, then two more in the seventh and eighth before piling on four in the ninth.
Meals (2-5) was handed the ball with a three-run lead but he sandwiched a pair of walks around a hit batter to load the bases. Ricky Oropesa's single scored two runs to bring the Trojans within a run. With one out, Meals walked O'Neill before Keith Castillo's single scored a run to tie things up and put runners on the corners.
Meals then threw a wild pitch past catcher Bryce Tafelski, allowing O'Neill to score easily without a play at the plate.
Davis pitched well, again, limiting the Trojans to just three hits and no runs while striking out six. But, the Gaucho bullpen faltered. Nick Loredo allowed three runs in 1.2 innings and Nick Capito allowed two runs in his inning of work before handing the ball over to Meals.
The Gauchos banged out 13 hits as five players had multi-hit games. Marty Mullins, serving as the designated hitter on Tuesday, led the team with three hits while Gunnar Terhune, Sean Williams, Trevor Whyte and Tafelski each had two hits apiece.
UCSB took a 3-0 lead in the first as Mark Haddow's bases-loaded groundout scored a run before Mullins' double and Whyte's groundout each brought a run across.
In the second, Terhune scored on a balk and Ben Edelstein's single in the third plated Whyte. The Gauchos tacked on two more in the fourth when Matt Valaika came home on a throwing error and Haddow later scored on Whyte's base hit.
But, unfortunately, it was not enough.
USC's Oropesa, who doubled and moved to third on an out, scored on Castillo's groundout in the sixth. In the seventh Kevin Roundtree hit a two-run single and Ryan Bast's base hit brought in the Trojans' first run in the eighth. Bast scored USC's second run of the eighth when Ashton Kent was caught in a pickle between first and second. Kent was out on the pickoff play, but Bast's run came across before the out.
UCSB will play at Long Beach State this weekend in an important Big West Conference three-game series. All three games can be heard on AM 1490 and streaming live online at UCSBgauchos.com. Steve Wendt will handle the play-by-play duties with every Big West weekend series scheduled to air live on the radio and streaming live online. Click here for more information and a schedule of baseball games on the air!
Earlier this year UCSB revealed a new look and the baseball team is sporting some new logos and uniforms on the field. Be sure to come to the baseball team's home games to outfit yourself in the new gear! Click here to take a look at the new logos and uniforms the Gauchos are wearing. All new gear is available for purchase at UCSB home baseball games.
UCSB Athletics has a new weekly radio show called Talk'n Gauchos which airs every Tuesday from 6-7 p.m. on AM 1490 KIST. The show is broadcast live from State & A Bar and Grill, located on the corner of State Street and Anapamu Street in Santa Barbara. Fans are encouraged to attend the show for free gear and ticket giveaways or to even e-mail a question in to one of the guests and have it read live over the air. The show also airs live online via audio streaming and fans can click here to check out the entire lineup of live audio streaming online.