The Gauchos had one of their best offensive performances of the season on Sunday afternoon, tying a season-high with their 11 run output.
Following the mercy-rule shortened victory, the Gauchos found themselves tied atop the Big West Conference standings with Pacific at 8-4. UCSB’s overall record improved to 23-26, while Pacific fell to 29-16.
Nine of UCSB’s 11 runs came in a third inning rally that, at one point, saw seven straight Gauchos reach base.
The outbreak was started by pitcher Shelby Wisdom, who hit a booming three run home run to left-center that landed on the batting practice facility of Uyesaka Stadium, the home of Gaucho baseball located behind Campus Diamond.
That home run chased Pacific starter Dani Bonnet from the game, but was just the beginning of the woes for the Tigers’ pitching staff. Reliever Tori Shepard was able to retire Lauren Boser, but would allow six straight Gauchos to reach base after that, highlighted by back-to-back RBI doubles from Allison Taylor and Keilani Jennings.
Pacific’s third pitcher of the inning, Nikki Armagost, allowed a double to the first batter she faced, but was eventually able to extinguish the rally by coaxing Wisdom into a groundout.
The nine run explosion was the highest single inning run output of the season for the Gauchos. In fact, it was more than the Gauchos have scored in any entire game this season save their 11 run win at UC Riverside on Apr. 14.
As intergral as Wisdom was to the UCSB offense, she was just as important in shutting down Pacific’s bats. After allowing a two run homer to Pacific’s Armagost in the first inning, Wisdom allowed just two hits the rest of the way, picking up her 18th win of the season with relative ease.
Wisdom retired the final seven batters she faced consecutively, highlighted by a swinging strikeout of Alexa Rivera in the fifth inning.
Left fielder McKenzie Kane led all players with three hits, all infield singles.
Taylor, Jennings, Wisdom, and catcher Lainey DePompa had two hits apiece, and the quartet drove in 10 of the Gauchos’ 11 runs.
Next week, the Gauchos will travel to UC Davis to take on the Aggies in a three-game series on Apr. 28-29.
UCSB next plays at home on May 5, when they will host rivals Cal Poly.