April 10, 2011
SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. - UC Santa Barbara (18-18, 4-2) swept its 2011 Big West series against Central Coast rival Cal Poly (6-26, 2-4) by tallying a 5-2 win in game three with the Mustangs on Sunday afternoon at Bob Janssen Field.
The Gauchos opened this weekend's series with 10-2 and 12-2 (five innings) wins over the Mustangs on Saturday night. With the series win, the Gauchos snapped a six-game losing streak against Cal Poly. It marked their first series victory over the Mustangs since 2008, when they also went 3-0. The victories helped UCSB improve to a 10-4 lead in the Blue-Green Rivalry standings.
As has been the case all weekend, UCSB took an early lead, which it never relinquished. Kathryn Pilpil opened the first inning with a lead off single and McKenzie Kane followed with an infield single. A sacrifice bunt from Allison Taylor pushed both runners into scoring position before Keilani Jennings hit her fourth double of the series to right center field, driving both runners home to give the Gauchos a 2-0 edge.
Jennings was once again the catalyst in the fifth inning as she hit a one-out double down the left field line before scoring during the next play on Lauren Boser's double down the right field line. An error by the shortstop one out later allowed Boser to score an unearned run and pushed the Gauchos further ahead at 4-0.
Mariah Cochiolo got the Mustangs on the scoreboard at the bottom of the same inning with a solo home run hit over the left field fence.
At the top of the seventh, Jennings opened the inning with her own solo homer hit to right field to stretch the UCSB lead back to four runs.
Down, but not out, the Mustangs got a rally going in the bottom of the seventh inning. Cochiolo led off with a walk and was able to move to second on fly out hit by Shea Williams. One out later, Nora Sobczak hit an RBI single to left field cutting the Gaucho advantage back to three runs. Jillian Andersen followed with an infield single before pinch hitter Nicole Lund came up to bat. Lund flew out to Brooke Putich in left field as the Gauchos held on for the 5-2 victory.
Krista Cobb (8-9) picked up the win after tossing the complete game. She allowed two runs on seven hits while walking three and striking out one. Rebecca Patton (4-14) suffered the loss after allowing five runs (four earned) on 10 hits. She walked one and struck out two.
Jennings once again led the Gauchos at the plate going 3-for-4 with two doubles, a home run, three RBI and two total runs.
With this weekend's sweep, the Gauchos now are tied atop the Big West leader board with Pacific and Cal State Fullerton. UCSB is also amidst a five-game win streak, the longest since opening the year 6-0.
UCSB will play its final regular season non-conference games on Tuesday when it travels to Cal State Bakersfield for a doubleheader. The first game is scheduled for a 1:30 p.m. start.