No. 28 UCSB Hosts LMU in Four-Game Series

March 4, 2009

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• The Schedule
Friday, March 6 at 2:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 7 at 11:00 a.m.
Saturday, March 7 at 2:00 p.m.
Sunday, March 8 at 1:00 p.m.
UC Santa Barbara (5-2) vs. LMU (8-2) at UCSB's Caesar Uyesaka Stadium
Series record vs. the Lions - (64-61)
2008 season record vs. the Lions (2-2)
All games available on Gametracker
Saturday's games broadcast online at kcsb.org
Sunday's game broadcast on KCSB 91.9 FM and kcsb.org

• Buy Season Tickets Now
For the first time ever, UCSB is offering season tickets for baseball that are for the best seats at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium. Every ticket purchased comes with a free UCSB baseball hat. Click here for tickets.

• This Weekend
UCSB will host Loyola Marymount this weekend in a four-game series. At 5-2, the Gauchos are off to their best start since opening the 2005 season with a 7-2 mark. LMU knocked off No. 5 UC Irvine, 11-3, on Tuesday and enters this weekend with an 8-2 overall record.

• Terrific Tournament Team
After winning two of three games at the Dairy Queen Classic in Minnesota last weekend, four Gaucho players were honored on the All-Tournament Team. Ryan Cavan was given the Silver Stick award for most hits after going 7-for-12 (.583) in the three games. Mike Ford was named one of two pitchers to the All-Tournament Team after 7.2 solid innings on Sunday. Matt Valaika (6-for-13, 4 RBI, 5 R) and Robby Cummings (4-for-12, 6 RBI) were also part of the All-Tournament squad.

• Captain Cavan
Junior Ryan Cavan leads UCSB with a .529 average and much of that is because of his sizzling week. In four games last week he went 9-for-16 (.563) with four runs, three RBI, two triples and a double.

• Gardner is Mowing `Em Down
After two starts spanning 14.2 innings, Joe Gardner has recorded 21 strikeouts - an average of 1.4 per frame - which leads the Big West. When he struck out 13 St. Louis hitters in his first start of the year, he became the first UCSB pitcher with that many K's since Gabe Neboyia had 13 against Cal State Northridge on Feb. 19, 2000. Gardner has issued just two walks in his two starts and opponents are hitting .157 against him. This past summer Gardner was named the Co-MVP of the Alaskan Summer League after going 6-0 with a 0.60 ERA in eight starts for the Kenai Peninsula Oilers.

• Hammerin' Haddow
Last year Mark Haddow hit .231, which was the lowest on the team amongst players with at least 20 at-bats. So far this season Haddow is third on the team with a .409 average and his 17 total bases are tied for second-most and are one more than he had all of last season.

• Built Ford Tough
Junior Mike Ford, who is on the Brooks Wallace Watch List, for the second straight season, went 2-0 last week with wins vs. UCLA and Washington. The last time Ford grabbed two wins within a week came last year when he defeated UC Davis on Apr. 11 and USC on Apr. 18.

• Better Than Average
Through the season's first seven games the Gauchos are batting a collective .313 as a team, which ranks second among Big West schools. Last year UCSB batted .321 as a team.

• Going, Going, Gump
Senior Brian Gump has belted three home runs - tied for the team lead - after hitting all of four last year. The centerfielder is tied, along with Shane Carlson, for second in the Big West in round-trippers.

• Oh So Close
The UCSB team record for strikeouts in a game is 16, which has been done four times. Twice already this year the Gauchos have come close to equaling that when they combined to strike out 15 batters vs. St. Louis and Westmont.

• Strikeout Squad
Through the season's first four games, Gaucho pitchers have struck out 73 hitters, or 10.4 per game. Last season the team averaged 6.6 strikeouts per game. The UCSB record for strikeouts in a season is 428, done in 1997. This year's team is on pace for 541 K's.

• King of K's
Mike Ford has 153 career strikeouts and should crack UCSB's top-10 this season. George Bonilla (1984-85) is 10th with 171 career K's. Ford's former teammate Michael Martin (2003-08) is ninth with 182. Ford is averaging 7.3 strikeouts per nine innings over his career.

• Power Patrol
Last season the Gauchos hit 55 home runs, or an average of nearly one per game. This season, UCSB has already blasted 11 home runs or an average of 1.6 per game. The 11 home runs leads the Big West Conference.

• Triple Threats
Mark Haddow and Ryan Cavan each have recorded two triples already this season and are not far off the pace of last year's leader. Patrick Rose led UCSB in 2008 with five triples.

• 18 Straight Zeroes
When the Gauchos shut out Cal State Bakersfield and Westmont in consecutive games last week, it was the first time since 1992 that a UCSB squad had posted back-to-back shutouts. Behind Mario Hollands' six strikeouts in eight shutout innings vs. Bakersfield and Zach Samuels' six shutout frames with nine punchouts, UCSB was able to accomplish the feat.

• The Book on Brontsema
A two-time Big West Coach of the Year, UCSB head coach Bob Brontsema is 411-402-2 and now in his 16th season at the helm. Brontsema's victories rank second in UCSB history and in 10 different seasons he has won at least 25 games.

• Meals, Tregoning Honored
Junior college transfers David Meals and Ryan Tregoning - each from West Valley Junior College - were recently given the top awards at the Santa Clara County Hot Stove Banquet for their achievements. Meals, who went 8-1 with a 2.93 ERA in 86 innings last year, was named the Community College Pitcher of the Year. Tregoning was given the Player of the Year award after hitting .442 with 72 hits, 18 doubles, four triples, seven home runs, 54 RBI and a .515 on-base percentage as the team's right fielder.

Probable Starting Lineup

Batting No. Name Pos. Yr. 2009 Notes

1. 16 Brian Gump CF Sr. 2nd in Big West in HR and SB
2. 4 Ryan Cavan SS Jr. Leads team with .529 avg; .824 slug.
3. 21 Eric Oliver 1B Sr. Has started every game this season
4. 22 Shane Carlson DH Sr. 3 HR tied for second in Big West
5. 8 Matt Valaika 2B Jr. .417, 9 R are both 2nd in Big West
6. 7 John DeAlba LF Sr. Hitting .333 in 6 games this year
7. 10 Robby Cummings 3B Sr. 10 RBI lead team, 2nd in Big West
8. 26 Marty Mullins C Jr. Hitting .294 in 5 starts this year
9. 25 Mark Haddow RF So. Tied for 2nd on team in total bases

Probable Starting Pitchers

Friday 11 Mario Hollands LHP So. Allowed 6 R on 9 H in 6 IP vs. Minn.
Saturday, G1 18 Joe Gardner RHP Jr. 21 K's leads Big West; 14.2 IP is 2nd
Saturday, G2 28 Jesse Meaux RHP Jr. 6 K's in 3 IP vs. Westmont
Sunday 12 Mike Ford RHP Jr. Named All-Tournament SP in Minn.

• The Gaucho Way
As a championship-caliber program, UCSB Athletics recognizes the responsibility that goes with it. This simply means all student-athletes, staff, and fans will behave with a champion's approach, creating a safe environment at games and events. All of those who attend, compete, or work at Gaucho events are caretakers of the passionate, exciting, and great experience UCSB is known for. This is "The Gaucho Way."

• BE Great
UCSB Athletics is proud to promote the celebration of Black History Month as part of one of two recently created programs aimed at providing an outstanding all-around experience for Gaucho student-athletes and to reach out to the campus and Santa Barbara community. The promotion of black history falls under the "BE Great" life skills program, which was recently unveiled by Director of Athletics Mark Massari and Executive Associate Athletics Director Diane O'Brien.

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