Lions Drop First NCAA Game of 2017
#19 UCSB defeated LMU, 6-3, on Thursday afternoon.
After receiving a waiver to start the season a day early, the LMU baseball team (0-1) dropped the first contest of the 2017 NCAA campaign to #19 UC Santa Barbara (1-0) by a count of 6-3 on Thursday afternoon from LMU’s Page Stadium.
UCSB’s Clay Fisher belted the second pitch of the season over the Mikos Blue Monster in left field to open the game, as the Gauchos never trailed en route to victory. The long ball got to LMU starter Blake Redman again in the fourth as Colton Burns laced a solo-shot over the wall in right field to make it 2-0 Gauchos. Despite the two round-trippers, Redman, who took the loss, pitched well, surrendering four runs (three earned) on five hits with six strikeouts over 6.0 innings to record a quality start.
On the other side of the ball, UCSB’s Noah Davis was impressive, dealing 6.0 strong innings of one-run ball while allowing just four hits with four strikeouts to pick up the win. After Kevin Chandler and AJ Woodall got the Gauchos through the seventh and eighth innings, UCSB turned the ball over to Alex Garcia who tossed a scoreless ninth to record his first save of the year.
Fisher and Landon Silver each collected a pair of hits for UCSB, with Fisher going 2-for-4 with the homer and three RBI out of the leadoff spot.
The Lions trailed 4-0 headed into the bottom of the fifth, but back-to-back doubles from Trevin Esquerra and Shearer pushed the first run of the year across for the LMU.
After UCSB got another run in the seventh, LMU responded with two more in the home half. A Nathan Keavy hit by pitch got the two-out rally going before Spencer Erdman singled to push runners to the corners. A wild pitch allowed the first run to score, and on the same play, an errant throw to the plate gave Erdman enough time to scamper into third. Caulfield capped the scoring run with a liner into left-centerfield on the ensuing play, chasing home the final LMU tally.
Sophomore Codie Paiva finished the game on the mound for the Lions, tossing the final 3.0 innings and allowing two runs on three hits with two punchouts.
The two teams will take Friday off from play due to expected rain before resuming the series on Saturday at 6 p.m.
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