OAKLAND – A six-run sixth inning opened the floodgates for a UC Santa Barbara baseball team that had been shutout in its past two games, allowing the Gauchos to salvage the final game of a three-game series vs. USF, 9-5.
The Gauchos opened the game up in the sixth inning scoring six times, highlighted by Ryan Palermo’s two-run single with the bases loaded. After a strikeout to lead off the inning, UCSB reached base eight straight times and sent 12 hitters to the plate. Five singles, a double, a walk, and a run-scoring fielder’s choice gave the Gauchos a 8-0 lead after five and a half innings of play.
Austin Pettibone improved to 4-1 on the season after allowing four runs in 5.2 innings. Greg Mahle recorded his first career save with three stellar innings of relief work as the freshman lefty did not allow a run.
Five Gauchos had multi-hit games, highlighted by Joey Wallace’s home run and Brett Vertigan’s double and triple.
In the sixth inning, Mahle’s single drove in the first run and Wallace’s groundout brought in another. After Palermo’s two-run hit, Vertigan had a bases-loaded double to bring in two more and that was all the Gauchos needed to finish off the series.
Although the Dons (13-13 overall) scored the final five runs of the game, the Gauchos (11-11) put the outcome out of hand with their 13-hit attack. It came on the heels of the team not scoring at all during Saturday’s doubleheader.
UC Santa Barbara scored once in the second on Joey Wallace’s 4-6-3 double play. It was the Gauchos’ first run of the series after they were shutout in both games of Saturday’s doubleheader. USF starter Abe Bobb pitched through a no-out, runners on first and third situation, allowing the one run in the top of the second.
The Gauchos lengthened their lead to 9-5 in the eighth, scoring a single run on Lance Roenicke’s RBI base hit.
UCSB returns home on Tuesday to face Pepperdine in a Throwback Tuesday game.