SANTA BARBARA, Calif. – On an intermittently blustery and sunny day at Campus Diamond, UC Santa Barbara (12-19) closed out the Gaucho Classic II with a pair of wins over San Jose State (16-16) on Sunday.
The Gauchos opened the tournament with losses to Wisconsin and Oklahoma State on Friday before Saturday's action was cancelled due to a storm. UCSB came back to the diamond focused, rattling off a 4-1 and then a 7-2 victory over the Spartans, who they had lost to just one week prior at the Santa Clara Bronco Classic.
In the first game, Jessica Soria led off the bottom of the first inning with a base hit to left field before she stole second. Senior Allison Taylor continued her clutch hitting as of late by driving Soria home with a double hit to right center field.
The Spartans knotted the game at the top of the fifth. Vanessa House and Jessica Garcia led-off the inning with a pair of infield singles before advancing a base apiece on a ground out by Breanna Lopez. A sacrifice fly from Cheryl Freitas hit to center field sent House home for the tying run.
The deadlock was short lived though. A trio of fielding errors by the Spartans allowed the Gauchos to load the bases with one out before Taylor once again put UCSB ahead when she drove Shelby Wisdom home with a single hit to left field. A fourth San Jose State error allowed Soria to score her second run of the game before DeJanee Moore's ground out sent Kane sprinting across home plate for the 4-1 lead.
Taylor's 2-for-3 performance with two RBI and a double led UCSB offensively while Wisdom (7-9) grabbed the win in the circle. She tossed a complete game in which she allowed just one run on nine hits. She walked two and struck out five.
In game two, UCSB ran into some early trouble as Sadie Coenen and Garcia hit consecutive singles with one out to put runners on the corners. Lopez hit a ground ball up the middle of the field to send Coenen home and give the Spartans their first lead of the day.
The top of the Gaucho order countered at the bottom of the first. Soria led off with her second base hit of the day before stealing second. One out later, Taylor blasted her second double to the far corner of the left field to send Soria home. Jenny Liepman came in to pinch run for Taylor and she had no time to get comfortable at second base as Keilani Jennings hit a double to deep right center field, giving the Gauchos a 2-1 lead.
One out later, Kathryn Pilpil singled to left center field to drive Jennings home.
San Jose State continued to fall victim to its own poor defense when at the bottom of the second, Lauren Boser led off with a double before moving to third on a Spartan throwing error in center field. Two outs later, an overthrow by the third baseman after a hit by McKenzie Kane allowed her to dash to second and Boser to tag home. An RBI single to second base by Taylor scored Kane and put the Gauchos up, 5-1.
Pilpil and Soria each scored runs at the bottom of the third and fourth innings, respectively, to add to the UCSB lead.
The Spartans attempted to battle back at the top of the fifth as Nicole Schultz led off with a double before moving to third on a ground out. Coenen's single to left field sent the runner home, but it would mark the last run of the game as UCSB grabbed the 7-2 win.
Taylor added a 2-for-4 showing with a double and two RBI to her day's resume. Soria was 2-for-4 with two runs and a pair of stolen bases, Lainey DePompa went 2-for-3 and Jennings reached four times, going 2-for-2 with an RBI double and a pair of walks.
Andriana Collins (5-10) captured the win after limiting the Spartans to two runs on seven hits. She walked three and struck out five.
UCSB will be back in action a week from today, March 25 when it hosts UCLA for a single game at Campus Diamond at 1 p.m.