Gauchos Avoid Sweep With Win Over Mustangs in Finale

Gauchos Avoid Sweep With Win Over Mustangs in Finale

April 30, 2006

Box Score

SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - Jessica Hejna and Kendra Singley each drove in three runs and Jennifer Davis went six complete innings en route to her 14th victory of the season as UC Santa Barbara showed its resilience in coming from behind to defeat visiting Cal Poly in the third and final game of the series Sunday at Campus Diamond.

The Gauchos, who bounced back after dropping both ends of Saturday's twin bill, improved to 20-18 overall and 4-8 in the Big West with the win, while the Mustangs fall to 24-20 (9-4 Big West).

Junior pitcher Davis notched her second start of the series for UCSB and allowed five runs on seven hits in the win. She struck out six and walked only two.

"We got a great performance from Jenn (Davis) today," head coach Kristy Schroeder said. "She got the job done and our offense carried it home. It is much easier to go out there and pitch when you are getting support from your offense."

After Davis retired the first six batters of the game in order, Cal Poly drew first blood for the third straight game, taking a 2-0 lead in the top of the third inning. With a runner on first, Ana Antonetti hit an RBI double to left field. She later scored on a sacrifice fly by Kelly Comstock.

UCSB responded with a run in its half of the third. Sophomore right fielder Nicole Churnock reached on an error by the shortstop to lead off the inning. After advancing to second on a sacrifice bunt by freshman second baseman Christine Ramos, Churnock came home on Hejna's single down the left field line.

The Gauchos took the lead with two runs an inning later on an RBI single by Ramos and a Hejna sacrifice fly.

Cal Poly tied the game at three with a run in the top of the sixth when pinch runner Jessica Rogers came home on a single to left field by Melissa Pura.

Santa Barbara then batted around and erupted for six runs in the bottom of the frame to take a commanding 9-3 lead.

Churnock and Davis got things started with back-to-back singles to lead off the inning. Both runners advanced on another perfect bunt from Ramos and Hejna followed with a ball hit sharply to the Mustang shortstop, who threw home on the play. Davis slid around the tag for the Gauchos first run of the inning.

The next batter was Singley who hit her second homerun of the series. Her three-run shot was a line drive that went over the fence in dead center field. She leads the Gauchos with seven homers this season.

Junior shortstop Brittany Putich then reached on an error and stole second. With two outs, she came around to score on a double by freshman first baseman Tiffany Wright.

After sophomore designated player Danielle Meyers walked, Davis got her second hit of the inning and Wright came home for UCSB's ninth run.

Sarah Iwata's two run double in the seventh brought Cal Poly to within four at 9-5, but Davis retired the final batter to preserve the victory.

Davis, who picked up her 22nd complete game of the year, improved to 14-13 on the year with the win. She finished 2-for-3 at the plate with two runs and an RBI.

Emily Hively got the nod for the Mustangs and allowed three runs on four hits in 3.2 innings pitched. Jenna Maiden came on in relief in the fourth inning and took the loss. She allowed six runs on six hits in 2.1 innings of work, while striking out one and walking one.

The Gauchos take the field next Saturday, May 6 with the first two games of three-game set at UC Riverside beginning at 12:00 p.m. Game three is slated for 12:00 p.m. Sunday.