In accordance with the cloudy skies hovering over Caesar Uyesaka, the UCSB baseball team issued a torrential downpour of runs Tuesday afternoon to flood visiting Westmont 18-4. Santa Barbara (1-0 overall) earned RBI from 12 different players in their rout of the Warriors (4-6), with three apiece from senior outfielder Ryan Tregoning and junior first baseman Trevor Whyte.
After a scoreless first, Whyte got the scoring started in the second with an RBI double to right field. After another hitless inning by Westmont courtesy of Gaucho junior pitcher Jesse Meaux, the home team exploded with six runs in the bottom of the third. UCSB would see its entire lineup take a turn at the plate before the inning ended with the home side up 7-0. Westmont responded with a run in the fourth, but the Santa Barbara offense simply wouldn’t quit, posting a run in each inning for the remainder of the game, highlighted by another six-run carousel in the seventh.
Once the outcome was no longer in doubt, Head Coach Bob Brontsema began pulling his starters in favor of the younger kids, and even that paid off. The nine subs who saw at-bats cashed in a combined five RBI on five hits, including sophomore Lance Roenicke’s first-pitch bomb that almost cleared the scoreboard in left field. It was Roenicke’s first career four-bagger, and he finished 2-2 with two RBI.
However, it wasn’t just the youth that wowed the fans at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium. Senior Matt Valaikia, who turned down a lucrative professional offer last spring, filled up the stat sheet with five runs, two hits and three stolen bases despite being nailed at the plate by the Westmont staff twice. Meaux, who started seven games for the blue and gold a year ago, got the win after lasting seven innings, giving up four runs on 12 hits while fanning seven.