A windy day provided UCSB’s bats with some added power during an 11-1 rout of Cal State Northridge yesterday at Caesar Uyesaka stadium. It was the first of a three-game series between UCSB and CSUN that will continue through tomorrow afternoon.
The win gives the Gauchos their third victory in the Big West Conference against a CSUN team that has five of its last six games.
With the win, UCSB improves to 15-13 overall with a 3-1 mark in conference play. The Matadors fall to 12-17 overall and just 1-3 in league competition.
The Gauchos took control on the offensive end by scoring three runs in the bottom of the second inning, two of which came off a double by freshman outfielder Luke Swenson. After a scoreless third inning UCSB put two more runs on the scoreboard in the bottom of the fourth. A botched pickoff attempt by the Matadors allowed a UCSB runner to take home plate from third base.
UCSB exploded for four runs in the fifth inning, increasing their lead to 9-0 after junior infielder Steven Moon sent a three-run triple into the outfield. Moon later scored in the same inning after the CSUN pitcher sent an errant throw past his catcher. Northridge gave up an RBI single to senior Lance Roenicke, who sent sophomore infielder Brandon Trinkwon through home plate.
The Matadors finally were able to send across across a run during the top of the eighth inning when freshman Chester Pak sent a runner through home plate. It was the only run CSUN would score in the game.
Gaucho Head Coach Andrew Checketts, who doubles as the team’s pitching coach, saw great performance from his pitchers on Thursday. Freshman lefthander Andrew Vasquez started the game and was credited with the win, giving up three hits and zero runs through the first three innings. Vasquez struck out seven batters in total and currently holds a team-best 1.10 ERA on the season.
Stepping in to the relief position on Thursday was UCSB freshman righthander Dalton Douty. Douty gave up one run and three hits while striking out one batter through the final three innings of the game.
The Matadors gave up six errors overall, while the UCSB defense was able to control the field without making any errors through the nine innings of play. Four Gaucho players added two hits to the box score for UCSB, including Moon, Trinkwon, Roenicke and Mahle.
UCSB continues its homestand against the Matadors through the weekend with a game today and tomorrow at Caesar Uyesaka stadium. Though still early in the season, Big West standings currently rank UCSB at tied for No. 2 with Cal State Fullerton.