After an obliterating 18-4 win to take the series against UC Riverside, the Gauchos returned to Santa Barbara for the one-game series against the Loyola Marymount Lions, looking to add to their two-game winning streak.

Freshman right handed pitcher Reed Moring took the mound for the Gauchos who quickly got his teammates off the field after retiring two Lions and redshift senior Sam Biller grounded out.

Redshirt senior Christian Kirtley got the ball rolling for the Gauchos with a lead-off single through the right side.

What was supposed to be a routine ground out for the Lions resulted in redshirt junior Jared Sundstrom reaching first after an error committed by senior infielder Benny Casillas put Kirtley in scoring position.

The Gauchos would jump out to an early 2-0 lead after a double down the left field line by redshirt junior Jonah Sebring brought Kirtley and Sundstrom across home plate.

Moring would continue dealing after starting the second inning with two consecutive strikeouts, recording four total strikeouts in just two innings pitched.

The Lions would shut out the Gauchos in the bottom of the second inning after sophomore outfielder Ivan Brethowr struck out looking and freshman infielder Corey Nunez grounded into a double play.

The following inning, LMU would start to turn things around offensively after sophomore catcher Khadim Diaw doubled down the left field line which brought Casillas and senior infielder Cole Roberts across home plate who both previously singled.

Head coach Andrew Checketts made the quick call and had redshirt junior left handed pitcher Carter Benbrook take things over for Moring who finished the day with four strikeouts, allowing three hits and two runs in his two innings pitched.

With Casillas and Diaw both in scoring position, senior center Jared Thomas grounded out which resulted in Casillas bringing in the tying run.

Despite the Lions tying the game at two runs a piece, it would be short lived after a lead-off home run by Kirtley put the Gauchos back into the lead the very next inning.

The score would remain 3-2 until the bottom of the fifth inning where the Gauchos would extend their lead by three.

With one out left to go for the Lions after Kirtley and Sundstrom flied out, redshirt senior Broc Mortensen was walked which advanced sophomore infielder Zander Darby to second who previously singled down the middle.

Mortensen and Darby would both quickly be put into scoring position after a wild pitch to Sebring advanced both base runners.

The Lions would immediately find themselves in a jam after a walk to Sebring loaded the bases for the Gauchos.

A stroll around the bases at Caesar Uyesaka Stadium would progress after a walk to Aaron Parker brought Darby across home plate the following at-bat, extending the lead to two.

A single through the left side by Brethowr brought home Sebring and Mortensen, finishing the inning with a score of 6-2.

LMU started the sixth inning with a double down the right field line by sophomore outfielder Connor Blough who would quickly advance to third after a single by senior infielder Dylan Dennis the following at-bat.

With base runners on first and third, sophomore outfielder Devan Ornelas hit a routine grounder and reached first base on a fielder’s choice by Nunez which resulted in Dennis being out at second base. Blough would come into score and cut the deficit to three.

With the Lions offense starting to heat up, Roberts singled to third base which put Ornelas in scoring position.

The following at-bat, Casillas lined out to first base which put the number of outs to two.

With the tying run at the plate, Diaw was hit by a pitch which loaded the bases for the Lions.

Redshirt junior RHP Alex Schrier got out of the jam the following at-bat after retiring redshirt sophomore Sam Biller.

The Lions would continue their late push into the seventh inning after three consecutive walks by Schrier and redshirt junior RHP Sam Whiting, who took over for Schrier after the first walk, loaded up the bases.

With an out yet to be recorded by the Gauchos, Dennis grounded into a double play which also resulted in Thomas coming into score to put the score at 4-6.

A lead-off home run by Sundstrom the following inning would put the game away for the Gauchos with a final score of 7-4.

UCSB continues to hold their second place position in the Big West with an opportunity to take command in the conference as they head to the South Bay for the weekend series against Long Beach State.