The UC Irvine Baseball team (21-11, 9-4) defeated the Cal Poly Mustangs (20-13, 7-3), 7-1, at Anteater Ballpark on April 14.
To start the ‘Eaters game strong, redshirt junior infielder Justin Torres hit a home run at the bottom of the first, making the score 1-0 to end the first inning.
After a mutual scoring drought in the second and third innings, Mustang graduate student infielder Brett Borgogno hit a home run into center field at the top of the fourth, tying up the game. At the bottom of the inning, Anteater redshirt sophomore outfielder Nathan Church had a walk to first. With Torres next up at bat, the junior infielder hit a home run into right field, making the score 3-1 to end the fourth inning.
The ‘Eaters and the Mustangs faced another scoring drought in the fifth and sixth innings. At the top of the seventh, Mustang redshirt freshman infielder Matthias Haas hit a single into center field, but the ‘Eater defense was able to hold off Cal Poly from making any runs.
The ‘Eater offense came back strong at the bottom of the seventh, with sophomore catcher Abraham “Bam” Garcia-Pacheco single into center field. Sophomore infielder Woody Hadeen followed Garcia-Pacheco with an RBI and a stolen base. With graduate student infielder Taishi Nakawake next up at bat, the infielder made a hit into center field, leading to another RBI for the ‘Eaters. With the score 5-1, redshirt senior utility Ben Fitzgerald hit a single and Church hit a borderline foul ball deep into left field. This resulted in another RBI and a score of 6-1 to end the seventh inning.
The ‘Eater defense dominated the inning, and was able to hold off the Mustangs from making any runs at the top of the eighth. After Hadeen hit a single at the bottom of the eighth, UCI’s bases were loaded, and a hit-by-pitch on Fitzgerald resulted in another run, making the score 7-1. Approaching the ninth inning, strong ‘Eater defense locked out the Mustangs at the top of the ninth, preventing Cal Poly SLO from scoring any runs and giving UCI the win, 7-1.
The ‘Eaters faced Cal Poly SLO in two subsequent matches on April 15 and 16, resulting in two losses. The Irvine team will look to defeat Kansas State in their next match at Bill Snyder Family Stadium in Manhattan, Kansas at 4 p.m. on Friday, April 22.
Leila Amiri is a Sports Intern for the spring 2022 quarter. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.