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UCSB softball closed out its final road trip of the season this past weekend after getting swept by Pacific 3-2, 5-1 and 9-2 at Bill Simoni Field.
[media-credit name="Daniel Wade" align="alignleft" width="201"][/media-credit]The Gauchos fall below .500 with a 24-26 overall record and a Big West mark of 8-10. The Tigers grasped full control of the top spot in the league with a conference record of 14-4.
“They came out punching hard, but we were capable of sticking with them,” senior shortstop Jessica Beristianos said.
Beristianos contributed two hits and two RBI in a losing effort on Saturday. One of the hits was her 42nd double of the season, tying Mandy Edwards’ career record set from 1997 to 2000.
“Jessica stepped up big time,” junior catcher Lainey DePompa said. “She really picked up our team and was clearly seeing the ball really well.”
In the fifth, Beristianos’ double cut the Tiger lead from four to two, but Pacific exploded for five runs later in the inning.
Junior Krista Cobb gave up nine runs — five of them earned — on 11 hits and walked five in game three.
“They’re all good hitters, and they adjusted to Krista,” Beristianos said. “Unfortunately, when facing a pitcher numerous times, they’re going to catch [on].”
In the series opener, Pacific’s offense was fueled by home runs, contributing two of their three scores. The Tigers lead the Big West in slugging percentage.
“We knew going in that we were going to need to contain their swings,” DePompa said.
UCSB grabbed the lead in the second inning, but quickly saw it erased by the end of the third. Freshman second baseman Kathryn Pilpil, who hit 3-4 with a run, tied the game in the fifth, but a lead-off home run from Rodriguez was enough to finish off the Gauchos.
UCSB will finish its season in the last series of the season at home next weekend against UC Davis.